Chicago Laborers Conduct Historic Election
March 2, 2000

CHICAGO The Chicago Laborers' District Council conducted an historic election of officers late Wednesday evening, March 1st. In all, 11 offices were filled in a democratic election, and the District Council had its first contested election in decades. The Laborers' District Council is composed of 21 affiliated local unions and has over 20,000 members in the greater Chicagoland area. Laborers work primarily on construction sites.

Approximately two years ago, the Laborers' International Union placed the District Council in trusteeship under Federal labor statutes. The Federal District and Appellate Court in Chicago upheld the trusteeship.

At the time, Robert E. Bloch was appointed Trustee, and he has guided the District Council through this period and negotiated a comprehensive collective bargaining agreement. Mr. Bloch will continue to be an oversight Supervisor of the District Council for approximately eighteen months.

The Delegates to the Council overwhelmingly elected James Connolly to the position of Business Manager. Frank Riley was elected President/Secretary-Treasurer. Nine other offices were filled, including the Council's Executive Board.

Connolly stated: "This is a remarkable turn of events and recognition by the Laborers' International Union and the U.S. Department of Justice that real reform can work." Riley emphasized that: "Our job now is to unite all members of the District Council and guide the Council into the next century."

Mr. Bloch stated: "The Laborers have a proud heritage, and reform efforts can falter if members lose their right to self-determination. The democratic election of reform-minded officers is a major step toward implementing lasting reform in the union."

Connolly and Riley will head the day-to-day operation of the District Council and will serve a four-year term.

Contact: Edward M. Hogan of Hogan Marren & McCahill, Ltd., 312-946-1800, for the Chicago Laborers' District Council

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