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Office of the Election Supervisor for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters




            JEFFREY NORMAND                                   2015-2016 EAM 8 (KAR)                                          LOCAL UNION 100                                      DECISION RE 2016 ESD 100


Protest Decision 2016 ESD 100 (ESD 100), regarding the eligibility of Jeffrey Normand, a member of Local Union 100, was issued on February 3, 2016 (OES Case No. E-134-013116-ME).  Mr. Normand and Sam Bucalo, Secretary-Treasurer of Local 100, filed a pre-election protest pursuant to Article XIII, Section 2(b) of the Rules for the 2015-2016 IBT Union Delegate and Officer Election (“Rules”), challenging the decision of the Office of the Election Supervisor that declined to verify Mr. Normand’s eligibility for nomination for a delegate position.


The Election Supervisor denied the protest.


 On February 4, 2016, an appeal was filed by Mr. Bucalo alleging that the Election Supervisor erred in finding Mr. Normand ineligible.


By Notice of Hearing sent to all distributees of ESD 100, a telephonic hearing was scheduled for February 5, 2016.  On February 5, 2016, the Election Supervisor submitted a written response to the appeal (OES February 5 Letter).  In addition, the Election Appeals Master received a written submission from Sarah McFarland, Administrative Assistant for Local 100.


A telephonic hearing was held on February 5, 2016.  The following individuals attended the hearing:   Sam Bucalo, Jeffrey Normand, Jeffrey J. Ellison, Esq., on behalf of the Election Supervisor (OES), and Jo Pressler (OES Investigator).


            For the reasons set forth below, the appeal of ESD 100 is DENIED, and the decision of the Election Supervisor is AFFIRMED.


Findings of Fact


Article VI, Section 1(a) of the Rules provides that “to be eligible to run for any Convention delegate, alternate delegate or International Officer position, one must:  (1) be a member in continuous good standing of the Local Union, with one’s dues paid to the Local Union for a period of twenty-four (24) consecutive months prior to the month of nomination for said position with no interruptions in active membership due to suspensions, expulsions, withdrawals, transfers or failure to pay fines or assessments; (2) be employed at the craft within the jurisdiction of the Local Union for a period of twenty-four (24) consecutive months prior to the month of nomination; and (3) be eligible to hold office if elected.”


The following facts, which are substantially drawn from ESD 100, are undisputed unless otherwise indicated.


The nominations meeting for Local Union 100’s delegates and alternate delegates election was held on February 4, 2016.[1]  Therefore, the 24-month period during which candidates were required to be in continuous good standing in order to be eligible for nomination ran from February 2014 through January 2016. 


The Election Supervisor found that Mr. Normand, a UPS employee hired in 1977, was for many years on check-off.  However, his TITAN “Member History” record indicates that on January 11, 2010, he changed from a check-off member to a cash dues payer.  At that time, Mr. Normand made his first large cash dues payment, paying 12 months of dues; the payment was posted to his dues record on January 12, 2010.  The last check-off dues payment recorded to Mr. Normand’s dues record was January 15, 2010, just four days after the date Normand’s status was changed in TITAN from check-off to cash.  The posting date for the last check-off from Mr. Normand’s pay indicates that his instructions to change from check-off to cash came too late to stop the January dues deduction UPS made.  Following that remittance, however, no further check-off payments are recorded in Mr. Normand’s dues record. 


Following his January 2010 cash payment, most of Mr. Normand’s dues payments were for large lump sums of six months or twelve months at a time; however, some were for shorter periods.  Occasionally, Mr. Normand was late with a month or more of dues.  Thus, a three-month payment posted March 11, 2011 paid for February, March and April 2011 dues and was late for February.  Another three-month payment posted June 7, 2011 paid for May, June and July 2011 dues, late for May.  A five-month payment posted October 13, 2011 paid for August, September, October, November and December 2011, late for August and September. 


To verify Mr. Normand’s eligibility for the period February 2014 through January 2016, the Election Supervisor reviewed TITAN records for dues remitted on his behalf.  Mr. Normand’s TITAN record shows that during the eligibility period he was a cash dues payer employed by UPS.  During this period, the TITAN record shows that Mr. Normand made a cash dues payment of twelve months of dues in December 2013, paying his dues obligation through December 2014.  His next dues payment was six months of dues paid on February 13, 2015, paying his dues through June 2015.  He paid an additional six months of dues on July 20, 2015, paying his dues through December 2015.  His most recent payment was made January 11, 2016, paying him through June 2016.


Dues check-off payments are made by an employer in response to a “bill” sent by the local union, based upon a code in the TITAN system assigned to members who have elected dues check-off.  Because Mr. Normand was coded as a cash dues payer as of January 2010, in none of these instances where Mr. Normand was late with a cash dues payment did the local union bill UPS to cover the delinquency; nor was a check-off payment made by UPS. 


Decision of the Election Supervisor  

Under Article X, Section 5 of the IBT Constitution, cash dues payments must be made to the local union on or before the last business day of the month in order to achieve good standing for that month.  Payment of dues by a cash dues payer after the due date does not restore good standing for purposes of computing the “continuous good standing” required to be eligible for office under Article II, Section 4 of the IBT Constitution or Article VI of the Rules.  The IBT Constitution permits local unions to provide in bylaws for payment of quarterly dues, but mandates that the member, “to be in good standing for each month of the quarter, must pay his dues for each quarter on or before the last business day of the first month of the quarter.”  IBT Constitution, Article X, Section 5(d).


The Election Supervisor determined that Mr. Normand paid his dues in the month they were due or in advance of the month they were due during the entire eligibility period, except for January 2015, noting that Mr. Normand conceded that his dues payment for that month was made on February 13, 2015.  The Election Supervisor determined that Mr. Normand’s late payment for January 2015 constituted an interruption in his 24 months of continuous good standing, rendering him ineligible for nomination.  


The Election Supervisor rejected the contention that Mr. Normand was on check-off even though a cash dues payer, that Mr. Normand’s employer should have deducted and remitted dues in January 2015 when he failed to make a timely cash payment by the last business day of that month, and that UPS’s failure to deduct and remit should not interrupt Mr. Normand’s continuous good standing.  


The Election Supervisor acknowledged that “[w]ere we to find that Normand was on valid check-off in January 2015, the employer’s failure to deduct and remit dues for him would not interrupt his continuous good standing.  A member on dues check-off retains his good standing even if his dues were remitted late or not at all by the employer, provided he had signed a check-off authorization and had sufficient earnings or paid leave in the month from which dues could have been deducted.  IBT Constitution, Article X, Section 5(c); Eligibility of John Gerow, et al., 2006 ESD 121 (March 2, 2006); Eligibility of Thiel, 2010 ESD 16 (July 26, 2010), appeal withdrawn, 10 EAM 4 (August 6, 2010).”   ESD 100 at 2.


The Election Supervisor specifically rejected the argument that Mr. Normand could not permissibly be anything other than a check-off dues payer under the UPS-Teamsters collective bargaining agreement, contending that all UPS employees are required to pay dues by check-off,[2]  noting that “[t]his unusual argument flies in the face of a six year history in which Normand has tendered and the local union has accepted cash dues payments, payments that are expressly authorized by the IBT constitution.”  Moreover, the Election Supervisor observed that


the contract language does not support Normand’s argument.  Under the contract, UPS is obligated “to deduct from the pay of all employees covered by this agreement” the dues of the local union having jurisdiction.  That obligation, however, is shifted in the next sentence to the local union, requiring it to “provide the Employer a weekly amount to be deducted from each employee.”  Local Union 100 complies with this provision by preparing and sending weekly to UPS a list of employees from whom dues are to be deducted, together with the amount for each employee.  This list Local Union 100 prepares and submits to UPS has not included Normand since the time his status changed from check-off to cash dues payer at his request in January 2010.  As a consequence, UPS has made no deductions from Normand’s pay since that time.  Were it otherwise and Normand remained on check-off, as he now contends he was all along, the local union would have billed UPS weekly for his dues while showing him already paid, with the result that Normand would have paid double dues.


ESD 100 at 3.  The Election Supervisor also pointed out that although the collective bargaining agreement has a union security provision requiring existing members such as Mr. Normand to maintain membership, the contract does not require that existing check-off members maintain check-off.  Accordingly, Mr. Normand was within his rights under the contract to opt out of check-off and become a cash dues payer.  


The Election Supervisor also rejected the contention that the local union should have billed UPS for Normand’s dues for the month he missed, January 2015, noting that this argument “fails to address this practical problem: under the IBT constitution a cash dues payer is deemed in good standing if he pays his dues as late as the close of business on the last business day of month, yet Normand urges that the local union should have billed UPS for Normand’s dues for   * * * January 2015, even though the local union did not know Normand would miss that month until the month expired.”  ESD 100 at 3.



Appeal by Mr. Bucalo


On appeal, Mr. Bucalo reiterates the arguments presented to the Election Supervisor and further argues that Mr. Normand remained on check-off because he did not revoke his check-off authorization in writing.  The appeal quotes the language of the check-off authorization indicating that it remains in force unless revoked in writing.  The check-off authorization does not specify any particular form of written revocation.  The Election Supervisor contends that Mr. Normand’s check tendered in January 2010 for twelve months’ dues was a written direction to the union to cease requesting that the employer deduct dues from Mr. Normand’s pay and thus constituted a written revocation of his check-off authorization; moreover, each additional check for multiple months of dues constituted a written reaffirmation of Mr. Normand’s desire and intention to revoke his check-off authorization. 


 At the hearing on February 5, Mr. Bucalo further argued that the union should have “automatically” returned Mr. Normand to check-off status at the end of his prepayment period, i.e., that check-off should have served as a “back-up” in any month in which Mr. Normand failed to make a cash payment.  Mr. Normand also suggested that he expected the union to bill his employer for January 2015 when he failed to make a timely cash payment—notwithstanding the fact that his cash payment on February 13, 2015, covered the month of January, and that the union had not provided such a “back up” on any of the other occasions where his cash dues payment was untimely.



Decision of the Election Appeals Master


                        The central question presented by this appeal is whether the Election Supervisor’s factual conclusion that Mr. Normand was a cash dues payer represents an abuse of discretion on the part of the Election Supervisor.  It has been repeatedly held that credibility determinations and factual findings are broadly within the province of the Election Supervisor and will not be disturbed absent an abuse of discretion.  Hailstone & Martinez, 10 EAM 7 (September 24, 2010); Eligibility of Swain, 11 EAM 20 (February 22, 2011); and Taylor & Fabiano, 11 EAM 34 (April 13, 2011).


The undisputed facts set forth above provide clear and convincing evidence that Mr. Normand was a cash dues payer.  He was properly classified in TITAN as a cash dues payer based upon his submission of a check in January 2010 for 12 months’ dues, which clearly reflected his desire and intent to become a cash dues payer and constituted a written instruction to the union to refrain from treating him as a check-off member.  Mr. Normand’s intentional change from check-off member to cash dues payer has been reaffirmed over the last six years, during which he has continued as a cash dues payer and has at no time taken any action to return to check-off status.  The suggestion that Mr. Normand could choose to become a cash dues payer and at the same time somehow retain the “protection” of check-off status simply ignores the administrative realities of the dues payment system, described above.  Moreover, based upon his payment history, Mr. Normand could have no reasonable expectation that his failure to make a timely cash payment for January 2015 would trigger an automatic “back-up” check-off billing to his employer by the union.  I therefore find that Mr. Normand’s failure to pay dues timely in January 2015 interrupted his continuous good standing and made him ineligible for delegate.


For the reasons set forth above and for substantially the reasons set forth in ESD 100 and the OES February 5 Letter, the appeal by Mr. Bucalo is DENIED, and the decision of the Election Supervisor is AFFIRMED.













[1] Mr. Normand was permitted to be nominated pending the outcome of this appeal.

[2] Mr. Normand’s protest states “[a]s part of the United Parcel Service national Agreement, all employees are required to agree to be on Dues Check-Off.”