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Carpenters continue to be sent to jobs from the Burnside regional office after the national union took over Local 247. Excerpts from a letter sent from international carpenters union General President Douglas McCarron to Willie Gore, president of Local 247 in Portland. According to an accountant’s report, “(C)redit card charges did not have appropriate supporting documentation attached to the statement indicating (the) business purpose for each transaction.
The international carpenters union has taken over operations of the Portland union local amid allegations of misused union credit cards and inadequate supervision. There was no supporting documentation explaining the business purpose for the purchases, according to the letter, and receipts were incomplete or missing.
Two credit cards were issued in the name of the union local’s financial secretary, with one in his possession and the other in the possession of the office manager.
Michael Draper, western district vice president for the carpenters union, has taken control as supervisor of Local 247. Eric Franklin, spokesman for the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters, said that criminal charges could result.
Local union members brought the issues to the international union’s attention in the last couple of months, Franklin said. A western district representative reviewed the local’s credit card statements from January 2009 to February 2010, and an accounting firm looked at finances and oversight from July 2006 through March 2010. According to McCarron’s letter, trustees said during an internal investigation that they did not review credit card receipts, and local union meeting minutes show that trustees had expressed frustration over not having access to all the receipts. Employees used more sick and vacation time than permitted, with the office manager taking nearly 37 days of sick time and 34 days of vacation time in 2009 alone.
Adjustments were made to hours worked on time cards after the week’s payroll had been paid, and there was no way to verify the adjustments. Deposits were held at the union office and not deposited properly; no deposits from March had been entered into the general ledger system by March 26. Auditor adjustments for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2009 had not been made as of March 26. It took the international union a while to catch the alleged misdeeds because nothing looked unusual from the outside, Franklin said. I’ve been watching the Carpenters Union make back door deals with Contractors for years to deprive union members out of working hours at carpenters scale for interior trades work. All members of Local 247 will have a chance to speak at the UBC International’s hearing. To Mike Couch: You were there and you did nothing and except what your puppet master Savage told you to do.
As far as being elected against the wishes of the PNWRCC, they never once sent the Local a letter telling us who to vote for or against. I take responsibility for being one of the people who called for the UBC International to investigate the mismanagement of the Local funds. The UBC International in this case has a very valid reason to perform the action they have taken. So Van Alstyne had nothing to do with this, this was a crises caused by the lack of trustee over-site, and the petty potentate holding their puppet strings. The International has unlawfully resticted the members right to VOTE, by the filing of fraudulent lawsuits engineered to do an end run around the NLRA, NLRB regulations as well as multiple Constitutional Rights guaranteeing same.
Said Fraud has cost UBC members Nationwide Billions of Dollars in losses & theft from said funds, and has lined the pockets of our corrupt Officials, who are apparently in bed with the US Department of Labor. Rob Van Alstyne, who actually runs the PNWRCC and has never been elected to dog catcher, saw Savage as a threat and trumped up these charges to exclude Savage and any of the members who advocate for Local Unions to have a greater voice from embarrassing him at the upcoming convention. All working people should pay attention to the egregious assault on union democracy happening in the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of the Carpenters Union, covering all Carpenter’s Locals in Oregon, Idaho, Washington, Wyoming, and Montana.
The United Brotherhood of Carpenters has a proud history and should take immediate action to overturn a recent Regional Council decision that disciplined innocent, union-dedicated Carpenters with fines and a loss of membership privileges. 1) causing dissent in the ranks 2) failure to uphold the union oath 3) defrauding the union.
The real crime of the convicted Carpenters was that they ran a well-organized election campaign, promising to reform their union on a pro-democracy basis, and they won. Their campaigns succeeded because they reached out to the union rank and file at work sites, while campaigning to fight for more democracy and transparency in the union and, more importantly, to fight for better contracts in the face of employers attempts to reduce the membership standard of living. Turmoil had been simmering in the Regional Council for quite some time, since century-old Carpenters locals throughout the state of Oregon and Southwest Washington were shut down and merged into a “mega-local,” which was done in a way that restricted the democracy previously enjoyed by the smaller locals. For example, since their local offices closed, rural Carpenters who wanted a union voice were forced to drive hours to attend a meeting.
This restriction of democracy was also occurring at the Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters, which had centralized power over the encompassing states through the Council’s ability to appoint business agents, staff organizers, and bargain contracts.
The accused Carpenters used these rights by campaigning and winning elections in their union.
After losing the election, the displaced leadership complained to the Carpenters International and a second set of elections was organized. Dissent simply means disagreement, which is perfectly normal and natural in every union, and one of the expressed protections conferred upon unions by federal regulations.


Perhaps the best evidence of the lack of merit in these Carpenter conviction was the composition of the jury that decided their fate. It’s clear that the lottery system was not used to select the new trial committee: One third of the lottery pool must consist of Oregon delegates, and the trial committee had zero Oregon delegates.
The injustices committed against these carpenters negatively affects all unions, since such undemocratic practices look horrible to the general public, and provides anti-union groups with easy ammunition. The convictions also weaken the Carpenter union directly, since many of their hardest fighting pro-union members are members without membership rights.
The convicted Carpenters are now appealing the verdicts to the Carpenter’s International, which has a chance to right a wrong, as well as a legal duty to strike down the above violations and reinstate the Carpenters’ membership rights and restore their elected leadership positions. Jack Gamboa, a member of the carpenters' union, said the protest was aimed at pressuring R&H to pay "area standard" wages and benefits to all workers.
The day's important news, including local and national headlines, delivered every morning. Thursday morning at 6:30 AM, carpenters started a strike against the Canadian construction company Neway Forming for unfair labor practices. At the corner of southwest 11th and Clay, a new, fancy, high-rise condominium building called Benson Tower is being constructed by 2 Canadian companies, general contractor ITC and subcontractor Neway Forming. Come support these carpenters who are taking a unique step in organizing and who are getting support from other building trades. Workers don't control shit, and never will as long as we allow bosses to use national flags as blindfolds, so they can pick all our pockets. If labor has learned anything in the last 25 years, it needs to be that nationalism is a tool that the boss use to divide and conquer the labor movement.
The author of the following article does not discriminate and is in favor of providing work for everyone. He also believes that overpricing and waste hurts the economy more than any pro-union individual cares to admit.
If the owners of these projects are able to profit from there projects they will continue to develop. So that thousands of people (Union Reps & so on) can sit in huge office buildings and drive nice cars that the workers are paying for.
Stop and think that maybe these union reps are protecting there own jobs - do they really care about the worker?
I doubt they all do they care about the well-being of the union financially - the number of members must be as high as possible for more power and more dues.
Think about this - what if the nation's commercial and multi-family buildings were entirely union controlled.
Today I noticed when I left for work that someone had called the Portland Police and they were there having to inform you of your poor behavior and citizenship. Because the construction industry is a time and Materials industry, low bid requirements on public works allows contractors from outside the area to bid work based on substandard wages and can help create a situation where contractors import low wage workers from outside the country or regional area where wages and the standards of living might be much lower than that of the community where the project is. And to respond to your claim that there are no union people who work on Prevailing Wage projects, these projects cover a significant amount of our contractor's projects. Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters, which represents union-member carpenters, is campaigning against the company St. If you've driven along Northwest Saltzman Road recently, you may have noticed a large banner that reads, "Shame on St. Jack Gamboa, the council's lead representative for Oregon and Southwest Washington, said the banner would keep returning to its post outside St. The council of carpenters is also campaigning against the wages of subcontractor K2MG, which is working under S.D. The Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters in June started placing a banner outside the office of the Archdiocese of Portland on East Burnside Street as well.
Following on the successful anti-war demonstration, more than 100 Portland's labor and Latin America solidarity activists gathered at Carpenters Local 247 to hear Luis Primo speak on the Venezuelan National Union of Workers (UNT), trade union democracy, and the need to build a trade union movement integrated tightly with the community and society as a whole. Pete Savage was fired from the council for his back door deals while lobbying in Salem for a bill that would chip away at Prevailing Wage. Pete was fired back in October but the membership continued to elect him as a delegate to the PNWRCC and the upcoming General Convention against the wishes of the PNWRCC. Statewide decisions were centralized, limiting Carpenter access to decision making process on the local level. The strike will continue on friday morning, starting again at 6:30, at SW Clay and 11th, and the strikers can use as much support from the community as possible.
Three months into construction the project is behind schedule, and will surely be even more so after today's walkout by carpenters and other workers.
A worker is a worker, and it don't matter were their from as long as they don't scab or undercut wages for their fellow workers.
Don't let bosses pit workers against each other over imaginary lines drawn on the map to keep us shackled to shitty wages.
I hope all UBC members understands that we should not piss off our Canadian brothers any more then we already have. In the mean time thousands of jobs are going overseas with the help of the union making labor so expensive in the US that corporations have no choice but to move on so they don't have put up with strikes and workers that never have enough.


Pius X on Northwest Saltzman Road in May.Behind the banner is the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters, which represents union-member carpenters. Deacon construction sites in Oregon and Washington, alleging that the general contractor pays its workers substandard wages. Deacon Corp of Oregon executive vice president and general manager Brad Howe said the company disagrees with the council's claims, as they offer fair wages and a good benefit package. Pius X's Pastor Craig Boly said the church doesn't understand the basis of the council's grievance since St. All rights reserved (About Us).The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Oregon Live LLC. The members lost their voice to vote.As the lucky few who are working for scale gets smaller and the illegal immigrants are promoted more on the works sites increase still nothing has changed in the us carpenters desire to take a stand together in fear of being blacked balled.
He did this in direct opposition to the official political direction of the Delegates of the Council. Because I stand for rank-n-file union democracy, and have worked harder than anyone in our local on those issues.
Bribes, Kickbacks, Mail Fraud, Wire Fraud are only the beginning of charges that should be brought. The newly elected President and Vice President of Local 156, as well as the other newly elected officers on the slate, are now facing fines up to $1,500 and six years of stripped membership privileges.
The connectedness that Carpenters felt to their union was removed by hundreds of miles; their personal investment in their union was forcibly made impersonal. The Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA) was created to give basic democratic rights within all labor unions and covers basic standards for union elections and free speech rights. The hand-picked jury surely contained no Oregon delegates, because the convicted Carpenters were Oregonians.
About 30 members of the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters threw up another picket line Friday morning at the corner of Southwest Alder Street and Broadway to demonstrate against R&H Construction's labor practices.
Neway Forming, of British Columbia, has been known as an anti-union construction company and has brought down workers from Canada because it can pay them less than Oregonians, though it claims that they need to do this because there are not enough skilled workers in Portland.
The bottom line is workers from every country have more and common with each other then with any bosses.
I've had employees in the union tell me directly that it is hard to believe the waste on large projects that are 100% union.
Deacon Corp of Oregon to remodel the school's old gym into a cafeteria, turn the old cafeteria into three classrooms, and build a new gym from the ground up. Deacon late last year, when the church was considering bids for the school's construction projects. The carpenters are a bunch of whining girls accepting what is given to them, My advice is for the members to organize outside of the union, The members are the driving force not the staff members getting fat at the cost to our future. Tell us what you did, anything beside set on your ass silently and let the status quo be maintained.
Savage would like everyone to think he was fired because he was a threat, but he was no threat he was the inside man.
The company has been particularly hard on Mexican carpenters who are paid considerably less than other non-union carpenters who happen to be white (about $12 an hour compared to $18 to $20). This Monday the 19th we will be there from 6am-3:30pm and every day after that as long as needed.
If it is about fairs wages and benefits then tell me why there are hardly ever union contractors on jobs where wages are required to meet the Davis Bacon Act. Last week, carpenters on the site were talking about unionizing, and by Friday one of them had been fired. You can also take this opportunity to learn more about joining a union and making a living wage with health care and other benefits for your whole family. BECAUSE NON-UNION WORKERS CARE ABOUT THE COMPANIES THEY WORK FOR AND WORK HARD AND ARE PAID BETTER THAN ANY UNION EMPLOYEE I'VE EVER MET - BECAUSE THEY PUT IN AN HONEST DAYS WORK EVERY DAY.
No one can say that this wouldn't be harmful to the United States - especially when it comes to jobs going to other counties in massive strides. In response the carpenter's union filed an Unfair Labor Practices suit, and workers this morning walked out. He deals with outhouses that have racial slurs toward africans on the wall, white co-workers with racial comments and pics on their bodies. Also present at the strike in solidarity were IWW members, the SEIU, Jobs with Justice, CBLOC (Cross-Border Labor Organizing Committee), and others from the community.Management scared 7 workers into going to work this morning, telling them they'll be fired if they join the strike, and that after the union takes out dues they end up making less money than they are now (which is false). But without the rest of the (approximately 15-man) crew, not a lot of work will get done today, especially with the absence of the crane operator, who refused to cross the picket line. Workers report that there are also unsafe working conditions at the site, including a crane that is old and improperly maintained.The strike will continue tommorrow and "as long as it takes," in the words of one organizer.
The striking workers need as much support as possible and are asking members of the community to join them Friday.



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