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Office of the Election Supervisor for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters


for the



IN RE: SAM BUCALO,                                )           Protest Decision 2015 ESD 29

                                                                        )           Issued: August 28, 2015

            Protestor.                                           )           OES Case No. P-037-081915-ME    



            Sam Bucalo, member and secretary-treasurer of Local Union 100, filed a pre-election protest pursuant to Article XIII, Section 2(b) of the Rules for the 2015-2016 IBT International Union Delegate and Officer Election (“Rules”).  The protest alleged that the Local Union 100 executive board impermissibly cut off candidate access to the email addresses of members by shutting down the local union website.


            Election Supervisor representative Lia Lockert investigated this protest.


Findings of Fact and Analysis


            Bucalo is the elected secretary-treasurer of Local Union 100 and a member of the local union executive board.  He previously was a website administrator for the local union website.


At the monthly executive board meeting held July 22, 2015, the board voted to shut down the website.  Bucalo was not present at the board meeting and did not learn of the decision until he noticed on August 18 that the website was down.


The website as it formerly existed had content available to the public and additional content available only to registered users.  Registration was limited to local union members.  A registering member had the option when registering to hide his/her email address or make it available to other registered users.  According to Bucalo, some 320 local union members had registered on the website to make their email addresses accessible to the other registered users.  Members of the executive board stated that the ability to access the email addresses of registered users raised privacy concerns that could be addressed by shutting down the website. 


Article VII, Section 7(a)(4) requires the local union to honor reasonable requests by candidates for distribution of literature through email.  Bucalo asserts that shutting down the website has extinguished the right of a registered user who is a candidate to email campaign material to other registered users.  Investigation showed, however, that the local union retains access to the email addresses of the website’s registered users even though the website has been shut down.  Accordingly, the local union must include the email addresses of the registered users in any email list of members that is used when a candidate exercises the email right to campaign granted by the cited provision.


Accordingly, we DENY this protest, but we direct the local union to preserve the email addresses of the website’s registered users so that they may be included in the list to which candidates may email under Article VII, Section 7(a)(4).  In denying the protest, we reject Bucalo’s contention that the decision to shut down the existing website and construct a new one violated the Rules as an unwise expenditure of union funds.  We examine local union conduct in the context of campaign rights and responsibilities, not as to whether they are wise or unwise.  Here, campaign rights protected by the Rules are preserved, ending our analysis.


Any interested party not satisfied with this determination may request a hearing before the Election Appeals Master within two (2) working days of receipt of this decision.  The parties are reminded that, absent extraordinary circumstances, no party may rely upon evidence that was not presented to the Office of the Election Supervisor in any such appeal.  Requests for a hearing shall be made in writing, shall specify the basis for the appeal, and shall be served upon:


Kathleen A. Roberts

Election Appeals Master


620 Eighth Avenue, 34th floor

New York, NY 10018


Copies of the request for hearing must be served upon the parties, as well as upon the Election Supervisor for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, 1050 17th Street, N.W., Suite 375, Washington, D.C. 20036, all within the time prescribed above.  A copy of the protest must accompany the request for hearing.


                                                                        Richard W. Mark

                                                                        Election Supervisor

cc:        Kathleen A. Roberts

            2015 ESD 29 




Bradley T. Raymond, General Counsel

International Brotherhood of Teamsters

25 Louisiana Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20001


David J. Hoffa

1701 K Street NW, Ste 350

Washington DC 20036


Ken Paff

Teamsters for a Democratic Union

P.O. Box 10128

Detroit, MI 48210-0128


Barbara Harvey

1394 E. Jefferson Avenue

Detroit, MI 48207


Teamsters United

315 Flatbush Avenue, #501

Brooklyn, NY 11217


Louie Nikolaidis

350 West 31st Street, Suite 40

New York, NY 10001


Julian Gonzalez

350 West 31st Street, Suite 40

New York, NY 10001


David O’Brien Suetholz

515 Park Avenue

Louisville, KY 45202


Fred Zuckerman

P.O. Box 9493

Louisville, KY 40209


Sam Bucalo

6158 Kingoak Drive

Cincinnati, OH 45248


Teamsters Local Union 100

2100 Oak Drive

Cincinnati, OH 45241


Lia Lockert

P.O. Box 17

Peninsula, OH 44264


Dan Walsh

950 Duxbury Court

Cincinnati, OH 45255


John Pegula

1434 Greendale Dr.

Pittsburgh, PA 15239


Jeffrey Ellison

214 S. Main Street, Suite 210

Ann Arbor, MI 48104