|Rick Vani -President|
|G. Varricchio -Vice President|
|F. Guerette -Recording Secretary|
|V. Horvath -Board Member|
|F. Vennari -Board Member|
|M. Iafrate -Board Member|
November 15, 1999
RE: Report on special called meeting of Nov. 11, 1999
I would like to begin my report by thanking
all the members who came out and participated in the lively debate
at the Special Called Meeting of Nov. 11,1999. It was very encouraging
for me to see a really great turn out for the vital and extensive
debate which took place during this 3 & * hour meeting.
Maintenance Agreement - Following thorough
discussion the Maintenance Memorandum of Agreement between the
Sarnia Construction Association and LIUNA Local 1089 was accepted
by a 74% favourable vote of those present and voting.
Social Investment - The following highlights
were thoroughly discussed:
A letter from an unknown source was sent
to many members with confidential, false and misleading information
regarding the wages of Robert Leone, Rick Vani, and Frank Guerette.
This letter used the information for grounds to turn down the
Social Investment Proposal put forward by the Executive Board
of Local 1089. This letter also suggested that because of false
and misleading information the members should join a protest rally
in front of Local 1089 the next day, along with other members
from across North America to remove your Elected Officers.
This rally was held on Nov.12, 1999 in front
of Local 1089 at which 6 people showed up. Three of these attenders
were members of the Joe Portiss family. None of which are union
member. The other 3 were Political allies of the Portiss family.
One of these came disguised as Santa Clause driving a car with
the license plate THE NIX. Another one, approximately 6'4",
disguised his identity by wearing a scary monster mask and trenchcoat,
he walked fine without his cane. The third who wore no disguise
was Retiree Donato Marinaro. His son Vince Marinaro showed up
later for a few minutes.
Prior to the above mentioned letter and rally,
James Portiss had initiated a Civil Action against the Union for
over $500, 000.00. Monies calculated from 1993 to present for
loss of wages and humiliation. This case was dismissed by a Judge
on November 10,1999.
This letter and rally simply appears to be
politics and revenge against the Union and its' democratic process.
It is ridiculous that these three members would come out and
support that type of rally with Laura Portiss as their spokesperson,
while her brother has been trying to sue the Union for over $
Lengthy discussion was held which clarified
the true wages and severance packages of Robert Leone, Rick Vani
and Frank Guerette. Following detailed discussion it was shown
(i) The wages and severance pay of these
officers are no secret to the members of Local 1089 and are being
paid properly in compliance with the motions passed by you the
members of Local 1089 over the years.
(ii) The financial transactions go through
extensive auditing processes which are conducted by:
-your elected Executive Board Members
-your 3 elected Union Auditors
-BDO Dunwoody LLP-Certified Accountants
-Certified Auditors from the International Union
Recently our financial dealings have been
scrutinized by the anti-racketeering division of the OPP. All
of the above have found our financial activities to be Clear and
A three hour discussion on this issue was
informative and covered areas such as Contractors, legal Opinion,
Associated Costs, Scaffold Product, Jurisdiction Issues, Skills
and Training Issues, Apprenticeship, and most important of all
Job Creation Potential.
It appears that Union members and/or Union
staff have released confidential membership information. The
members expressed their concern over the seriousness of this issue
in that the release of confidential records could be used against
the Union and/or Union members in areas such as Collections, Employment
Insurance Investigations, Compensation Issues, Civil Actions,
Health and Welfare Transactions, etc. etc. etc.
It was therefore decided by the membership
that the Business Manager must investigate and locate the source
of this breach of trust. The members then passed a motion that
any Union staff person involved in this breach of union security
be Fired and that any union member involved be charged and expelled
from Union Membership.
As Business Manager I do not look forward
to this investigation, with its' potential for charges being laid
against members and/or a staff member being fired. As I prefer
to look to find the best in people. I fear I may be heart broken
by what I may find in a full and thorough investigation.
After an extensive question and answer period
the members overwhelmingly supported the decision to proceed with
the Scaffold Investment by passing a motion that the President
and Business Manager of LIUNA Local 1089 adopt and execute a Resolution
which amends the Benefit Trust Agreement of instruct the Trustees
of the Benefit Trust Fund to determine if the Future Eligibility
Reserve is fully funded and then to invest up to 75% of the surplus
remaining (after the Future Eligibility Reserve is fully funded)
by way of debt or equity, or a combination thereof in a corporation
or other entity whose intended primary purpose is to purchase,
lease and/or manufacture Scaffolding Equipment, provided the investment
thereof will not affect the ongoing viability of the fund.
The intended purpose of this Resolution is to:
(i) Create employment opportunities for the members of Local 1089.
(ii) Increase the returns presently being earned on the invested assets.
(iii) Maintain and protect Labourers jurisdiction.
It is expected that some people and companies
for personal, political and financial reasons will continue to
try to sabotage this historical chance for the Labourers Union.
Let us therefore join together. Ready to fight against the attacks,
false information and outright lies against our Union put forth
as an attempt to stop us from securing our work.
I would like to take this time to express
my appreciation to those of you who attended this meeting and
to thank the membership for the vote of confidence in allowing
this Social Investment to proceed to the next step. I would also
like to thank the members for the Solidarity they have shown towards
the officers of our great Union. I wish each and every member
peace and prosperity as the coming years unfold before us. The
Christmas Season is fast approaching and I look forward to seeing
you and your children at the upcoming Christmas Party to celebrate
the Joyous Season in Harmony.
Yours in Solidarity