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2009-09-16

Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees

September 9, 2009


Mr. John Lund, Deputy Assistant Secretary
Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary
Tel: (202) 693-0122

U.S. Department of Labor
Employment Standards Administration
Office of Labor-Management Standards
200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room N-1519
Washington, DC 20210
General Tel: (202) 693-0125
Fax: (202) 693-1344
LMRDA assistance: (202) 693-0123
olms-public@dol.gov
http://www.dol.gov/esa/olms/


RE: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Lund:


On November 8, 2008, I began to protest to the New York City District Council of Carpenters (NYCDCC) Election Committee, and thereafter to the Election Monitor Steven Bennett and the UBC General President Douglas McCarron, that the incumbents Executive Secretary-Treasurer (EST) Michael J. Forde, President Peter Thomassen and Vice President Denis Sheil whom are receiving carpenters’ union pension plan benefits, and therefore are retired, were ineligible as candidates in the NYCDCC 2008 Election. Additionally, several other local union officers and NYCDCC employees are receiving pension plan benefits. Furthermore, since they and I are members of the same union I, as do many other union carpenters, insist that all carpenters’ union pension plans within the UBC are the equivalent of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan (aka International Plan) with respect to eligibility for office.


The 2006 United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America (UBC) Constitution, Section 31D, at pg 33-34, states:
A member cannot hold office or the position of Delegate or a Committee position, or be nominated for office, Delegate or a Committee position, if receiving a pension under the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan, or unless present at the time of nomination, except that the member is in the anteroom on authorized business or out on official business, or prevented by accident, sickness, or other substantial reason accepted by the Local Union or Council from being present; nor shall the member be eligible unless working for a livelihood in a classification within the trade autonomy of the United Brotherhood as defined in Section 7 or in employment which qualifies him or her for membership, or is depending on the trade for a livelihood, or is employed by the organization as a full-time officer or representative; provided, further, that members who are life members, apprentices, trainees or probationary employees shall not be eligible. A member must have been twelve (12) consecutive months a member in good standing immediately prior to nomination in the Local Union and a member of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America for two consecutive years immediately prior to nomination, unless the Local Union has not been in existence the time herein required, and must remain a member in good standing at all times in order to remain in the position to which he is elected or appointed. A member who retires after being elected may complete the term for which elected unless receiving a pension under the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan. Contracting members are not eligible to hold office, nor shall a member who has been a contracting member until six months have elapsed following notification by the member to his or her Local Union in writing that he or she has ceased contracting.” [Underline and emphasis mine]
[http://franco1.info/UBCJA/UBC_Con_2006.pdf]


Title 29, Chapter 18 (ERISA), Subchapter I, Subtitle A, § 1002. Definitions, Paragraph (2) (A) states:
Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the terms “employee pension benefit plan” and “pension plan” mean any plan, fund, or program which was heretofore or is hereafter established or maintained by an employer or by an employee organization, or by both, to the extent that by its express terms or as a result of surrounding circumstances such plan, fund, or program—
(i) provides retirement income to employees, or
(ii) results in a deferral of income by employees for periods extending to the termination of covered employment or beyond,
regardless of the method of calculating the contributions made to the plan, the method of calculating the benefits under the plan or the method of distributing benefits from the plan. A distribution from a plan, fund, or program shall not be treated as made in a form other than retirement income or as a distribution prior to termination of covered employment solely because such distribution is made to an employee who has attained age 62 and who is not separated from employment at the time of such distribution. [Underline and emphasis mine]
[http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/29/usc_sec_29_00001002----000-.htm]


The April 1, 2004, NYCDCC Pension Fund (aka “On-the-Tools” Pension) Summary Plan Description (SPD) at page 31 states:

Reemployment after Retirement:
If you return to Covered Employment following retirement and before age 70, pension payments may be suspended. This will happen for each month in which you work 40 or more hours in “disqualifying employment.”

“Disqualifying” employment means Covered Employment or any employment or self-employment within the collective bargaining jurisdiction of the Union (including work for the City of New York).

You must notify the Trustees in writing if you perform 40 hours or more of “disqualifying employment” in any month. If you fail to notify, and your benefit is paid for a month for which it is later determined you were ineligible because of disqualifying employment, the overpayment will be deducted from future pension payments until the full amount has been repaid to the Plan.

You should also notify the Trustees when your disqualifying employment ends. Benefit payments will resume starting with the month following the last month for which benefits were suspended, with payments starting no later than the third month following the last month of suspension, as long as you gave the Trustees timely notice of the end of your disqualifying employment.

The way the benefit earned during your reemployment is calculated is determined by the rules described in the next section. [Underline and emphasis mine]
[http://www.nycdistrictcouncil.com/PensionSPD.pdf, page 31]

The “Reemployment after Retirement” section of the 2004 NYCDCC Pension Fund SPD shows that a NYCDCC Pension Plan recipient is considered to be retired. If the recipient of pension benefits works 40 or more hours in “disqualifying employment” in a month that recipient must notify the Trustees in writing. If that recipient fails to notify the Trustees in writing, and the benefit is paid for a month for which it is later determined the recipient was ineligible because of “disqualifying employment”, the overpayment will be deducted from future pension payments until the full amount has been repaid to the Plan.

“Disqualifying employment” means “covered employment” or any employment or self-employment within the collective bargaining jurisdiction of the Union (including work for the City of New York). I am quite certain that “collective bargaining jurisdiction” means within, affiliated to, or directly related to the carpentry trade and that “Union” means the Local Unions, the District and Regional Councils, and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America. If I am mistaken, please provide supporting documentation that explains how I am mistaken and the specific definitions of “collective bargaining jurisdiction” and “Union” and how derived.

Since a person who is a recipient of pension plan benefits is considered to be retired, it follows that a carpenters’ union member who is a recipient of a carpenters’ union pension plan benefits is therefore considered retired from union carpentry.

To receive rightfully NYCDCC Pension Plan benefits a member cannot work 40 hours or more per month.

If a member receives pension benefits, is therefore retired, he/she is restricted to work less than 40 hours per month and therefore cannot be depending on the trade for a livelihood.

If a member is retired and/or is not depending on the trade for a livelihood then he/she “cannot hold office or the position of Delegate or a Committee position, or be nominated for office, Delegate or a Committee position”.

If a member is retired and/or is not depending on the trade for a livelihood and he/she holds an office or the position of Delegate or a Committee position, or is nominated for office, Delegate or a Committee position then this appears to be a violation of the UBC Constitution, Section 31D.

Conversely, if a member is working 40 hours or more per month and is depending on the trade then he/she is working in “covered employment” and consequently ineligible for NYCDCC Pension Plan benefits.

If a member is working 40 hours or more per month in “covered employment” and is receiving NYCDCC Pension Plan benefits then this appears to be a violation of the NYCDCC Pension Plan and therefore may be pension fraud.

None of this escapes the fact that receiving pension benefits constitutes retirement and members who retire “after being elected may complete the term for which elected”, which logically follows that a member cannot be nominated again for office or as a Delegate or for a Committee position when taken in context of Section 31D of the 2006 UBC Constitution.


In essence, I am seeking rulings that concur that:
1. the receipt of pension plan benefits equates retirement,
2. those who are receiving pension plan benefits or any other type of retirement benefit from any source directly associated with or to carpenter local unions, affiliated councils, or the UBCJA cannot hold office or the position of Delegate or a committee position, or be nominated for office, Delegate or a committee position,
3. all carpenters’ union pension/retirement plans within the UBCJA are the equivalent of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan with respect to eligibility for office,
4. those receiving pension plan/retirement benefits, and therefore retired, to have been ineligible as a candidate in the 2008 NYCDCC election, and
5. those receiving pension plan/retirement benefits, and therefore retired, to have been ineligible as a candidate in any election, delegates, or committee member, since at least the implementation of the January 1, 2006 UBC Constitution.


Sincerely,
/s/ Daniel J. Franco /s/
Local Union 157, UBC




cc: Denise Boucher, Director
U.S. Department of Labor
Employment Standards Administration
Office of Labor-Management Standards
Office of Policy, Reports and Disclosure
Frances Perkins Bldg
200 Constitution Ave NW, Room N-5613
Washington, DC 20210
Tel: (202) 693-1185
boucher.denise(at)dol.gov

cc: Stephen J. Willertz, Director
U.S. Department of Labor
Employment Standards Administration
Office of Labor-Management Standards
Office of Enforcement and International Union Audits
200 Constitution Ave NW
Washington, DC 20210
Tel: (202) 693-1182
willertz.stephen(at)dol.gov

cc: Ralph Gerchak, District Director
U.S. Department of Labor, OLMS
New York District Office
201 Varick St., Room 878
New York, NY 10014
Tel: (646) 264-3190
gerchak.ralph(at)dol.gov

20 comments:

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Cautero, Gregg L - ESA Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
To: danieljfranco1@gmail.com
Date: Fri, Sep 11, 2009 at 10:23 AM
Subject: NYCDCC election issue


Mr. Franco,

Please call me regarding your election complaint to DOL – (646) 264-3149.

Thank you.

Gregg L. Cautero, Investigator
U.S. Department of Labor - OLMS
201 Varick St.
New York, NY 10014
(646) 264-3149 (phone)
(646) 264-3191 (fax)

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Fri, Sep 11, 2009 at 11:51 AM
Subject: Re: NYCDCC election issue


Dear Mr. Cautero:


Attached are the correspondences between me and the NYCDCC Election Committee, Steven Bennett, the Election Monitor, and UBC General President Douglas McCarron.

At this time, I am unable to locate McCarron's response to my last letter. Also at this time, I'm wondering if he had directly sent me a response. If I find his response I will send it to you immediately.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco


P.S.: As you may already know, the link in my letter that was supposed to refer to ERISA is incorrect. It was supposed to be http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/29/usc_sec_29_00001002----000-.html rather than http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00001961----000-.html .



9 attachments
2008-01-25_Pensions,Forde-McCarron(scanned).pdf
2008-02-01_Pensions,McCarron-Forde(scanned).pdf
2008-11-03_Pensions,Franco-NYCDCC_EC.pdf
2008-11-14_Pensions,NYCDCC_EC-Franco(scanned).pdf
2008-12-05_Pensions,Franco-NYCDCC_EC.pdf
2008-12-16_Pensions,NYCDCC_EC-Franco(scanned).pdf
2008-12-18_Pensions,Franco-EM.pdf
2008-12-29_Pensions,EM-Franco(scanned-text).pdf
2009-01-09_Pensions,Franco-McCarron.pdf

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Fri, Sep 11, 2009 at 6:22 PM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


I noticed that the Subject: line of your email, "NYCDCC election issue", is different from the Subject: line of my email, “Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees”.

Please note that the issues that I have requested the US DOL investigate is not primarily the NYCDCC election. My primary issues are retirement, the receipt of retirement benefits, and carpenter union officers, delegates, and committee members.

I am well convinced, based upon personal experience and correspondence, that there is a collective deliberate ambiguous interpretation of the UBC Constitution and the NYCDCC Pension Plan by the UBC, in particular General President McCarron, the NYCDCC officers and employees, in particular, former EST Michael J. Forde, President Peter Thomassen, and Vice President Denis Sheil, the 2008 NYCDCC Election Committee, the 2008 NYCDCC Election Monitor, Steven Bennett, and the NYC local union officers.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" cautero.gregg@dol.gov
Date: Fri, Sep 11, 2009 at 6:34 PM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


Below is an email conversation I had with Dana Salazar, assistant to Election Monitor Steven Bennett, related to the "Pension Issue".


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco


--------


From: "Daniel J. Franco"
Sent: 12/19/2008 10:34 AM EST
To: Steven Bennett; Dana Salazar
cc: "'Torrance, Benjamin \(USANYS\)'" Benjamin.Torrance@usdoj.gov; Kristin.Vassallo@usdoj.gov; unitel.group@gmail.com; grothman@odblaw.com
Subject: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dear Election Monitor:


Attached is my appeal to you for the NYCDCC Election Committee’s deliberate refusal to answer my inquiries regarding Forde, Thomassen and Sheil receiving pension benefits. However, a printed original has been sent via Certified Mail.

Additionally, USDC Judge Charles S. Haight, UBC General President Douglas J. McCarron and NYCDCC DoO Maurice Leary will each be sent a copy via fax.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco


---


From: Dana Salazar [mailto:dsalazar@JonesDay.com]
Sent: Friday, December 19, 2008 1:37 PM
To: Daniel J. Franco
Cc: Steven Bennett
Subject: Re: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dan,

We would like to schedule a telephone hearing for Monday at 4:00. Please let me know if this works with your schedule.

Kind regards,

Dana


---


From: "Daniel J. Franco"
Sent: 12/21/2008 11:13 PM EST
To: Dana Salazar
Cc: Steven Bennett
Subject: RE: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dear Mrs. Salazar:


For what purpose would a telephone hearing, or any hearing, be required? A hearing is not required to answer my questions.

Until my questions are answered, I cannot figure to what purpose a hearing is needed.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco


---


From: Dana Salazar [mailto:dsalazar@JonesDay.com]
Sent: Monday, December 22, 2008 7:37 AM
To: Daniel J. Franco; Steven Bennett
Subject: Re: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dan,

The purpose of the hearing is for the Election Monitor ask questions and clarify the issues. It is, of course, not required. If you prefer, we can rule on your appeal as submitted.

Kind regards,

Dana


[continued in next comment]

Daniel J. Franco said...

[continued from last comment]


From: "Daniel J. Franco"
Sent: 12/22/2008 09:37 AM EST
To: Dana Salazar
Subject: RE: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dear Ms. Salazar:


With my last email, I didn’t intend to sound rude. If I had, I apologize. However, I am quite irritated that I cannot get straight answers to my simple questions. I know they are questions that can be easily answered. The only apparent reasons why my questions are not being answered is to stall for time and/or is an attempt to wear us down and cause us to drop this issue. The pension issue cannot be “dropped” until it is proven that all elected officers of the DC currently in office were not and are not receiving carpenters’ union pension plan benefits.

Either they were and/or are receiving pensions or they are not. If they were or are, then they are retired and therefore ineligible to run for office. If they were or are receiving carpenters’ union pension plan benefits, which limits working hours to less than 40 per month, they cannot be full-time officers. However, they are full-time officers and if they were or are receiving pensions then this appears to be a violation of the pension plan and possibly pension fraud.

A large amount of bias from the Election Monitor appears to have occurred with respect to Mr. Bennett’s decision to Davenport’s complaint regarding Forde, Thomassen and Sheil receiving pension benefits. Mr. Bennett has stated in his decision to Davenport dated December 6, 2008, “UBC President McCarran has addressed this issue and has determined that candidates may properly receive a Tool Pension and still run for and serve in office”. However, unless stated elsewhere, UBC General President McCarron has stated in his reply letter to Forde dated February 1, 2008, “the receipt of a pension from the New York City District Council of Carpenters’ Pension Fund would not automatically render a member ineligible to be nominated for an officer position.” Any one with an average level of understanding of the English language will know that McCarron has not determined, or even implied, “that candidates may properly receive a Tool Pension and still run for and serve in office”.

Although it was and is not acceptable, this bias was expected to occur from the Election Committee because their experience, capability and authority do not extend to making such determinations. However, as qualifications of an Election Monitor and experienced attorneys you should have the experience, capability and authority to make such determinations and to make them correctly.


Additionally, I am curious, have you, Bennett, and/or Jones Day ever received any influence or advice from any person associated with O’Dwyer and Bernstein, in particular Gary Rothman? To your knowledge, has any Election Committee member received any influence or advice from any person associated with O’Dwyer and Bernstein, in particular Gary Rothman, in connection with the NYCDCC 2008 Election?


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

[continued in next comment]

Daniel J. Franco said...

[continued from last comment]

From: Dana Salazar [mailto:dsalazar@JonesDay.com]
Sent: Monday, December 22, 2008 9:57 AM
To: Daniel J. Franco
Subject: Re: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dan,

It appears that you have questions after all. The hearing is the best forum for your questions.

I look forward to speaking with you then

Kind regards,

Dana


---


From: Daniel J. Franco
Sent: Monday, December 22, 2008 1:15 PM
To: 'Dana Salazar'
Subject: RE: Forde, Thomassen and Sheil Pension Issue


Dear Ms. Salazar:


I am not trying to be combative, but a response in writing that answers my questions would be best.

Why are the questions I submitted to the Election Monitor in my appeal to the Election Committee’s decision not being answered? Is there some reason that everyone is unwilling to explain to me that my questions are not needed or required to be answered? Is a telephone conversation really needed to explain why? It is unlikely that I would be able to provide additional information to answer my own questions or help Mr. Bennett make a decision other than the one he has already reached against reach my complaint and remedy, as he had with Davenport’s complaint, but has yet to present.

However, if the questions I have already submitted to the Election Monitor in my letter dated December 18, 2008, which were initially sent December 5, 2008, to and refused to be answered by the Election Committee, were answered I could then agree to an in-person meeting. With the in-person meeting having all persons sworn-in before giving testimony, the testimony recorded by a stenographer and paid for by the Election Monitor, and copies of the testimony automatically sent free of charge within one week (seven days) to all persons having given testimony. If I am needed to give testimony, I need to see the face of all the others involved and to be able to look them in the eyes and they into mine when we give our testimonies.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 4:21 AM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


I felt the need to elaborate upon my last email more thoroughly:

I am well convinced, based upon personal experience and correspondence, that there is a collective deliberate ambiguous interpretation of the UBC Constitution, the NYCDCC Pension Plan and/or ERISA, to (1) circumvent not only the letter of these laws but also their spirit, so that the few (officers, business representatives, etc) may benefit even more greatly from the many (the “rank & file”), and thereby cause many to possibly suffer by the diminishment of the reserve of the NYCDCC Pension Plan more rapidly and haphazardly than anticipated, thereby endangering the stability, if not the existence, of the NYCDCC Pension Plan and (2) to refute probable pension fraud.

I am well convinced, based upon personal experience and correspondence, that the collective deliberate ambiguous interpretation of the UBC Constitution, the NYCDCC Pension Plan and/or ERISA is perpetually perpetrated by the UBC, in particular General President McCarron, the NYCDCC officers and employees, in particular, former EST Michael J. Forde, President Peter Thomassen, and Vice President Denis Sheil, and the NYC local union officers and had been perpetrated by the 2008 NYCDCC Election Committee and the 2008 NYCDCC Election Monitor, Steven Bennett.

My view is based partly upon the following:

1. UBC General President McCarron stated in his letter to Forde dated February 1, 2008, “the receipt of a pension from the New York City District Council of Carpenters’ Pension Fund would not automatically render a member ineligible to be nominated for an officer position”. He was intentionally evasive and circumvented answering explicitly.

2. Forde, Thomassen, and Sheil just flat-out ignored or evaded the pension issue during the 2008 NYCDCC Election cycle, as did the NYCDCC Election Committee.

3. The mindset of many, if not most, of the officers and employees of the NYCDCC and NYC carpenter local unions is that it is acceptable to receive pension plan benefits from the NYCDCC Pension Plan while they are not “working on the tools”. They fail to understand that the UBC Constitution disallows retired members running for office, being a delegate, or holding a committee position and that those receiving NYCDCC pension plan benefits must work less than 40 hours per month when working within the jurisdiction of the union. The UBC Constitution, Section 6A, states, “The jurisdiction of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America shall include all branches of the Carpenter and Joiner trade, the industrial sector, and any kind of work being performed by any members of the United Brotherhood.” [Emphasis mine] This means that they are, whether knowingly or not, probably committing pension fraud while receiving pension plan benefits while working 40 or more hours per month within the jurisdiction of the UBC.

[continued in next comment]

Daniel J. Franco said...

[continued from last comment]

4. Election Monitor Bennett stated in his December 18, 2008, Decision to my pension issue complaint, “The UBC Constitution and the Rules speak in terms of UBC Pension Plan payments only.” and also states, “That express language is significant.” He then states, “If the drafters of the UBC Constitution and the Rules had meant receipt of any pension to disqualify candidates, they could have stated so. The use of the generic term "retires" later in Section 31(D) of the Constitution was not clearly intended to mean that receipt of any pension payment by a candidate while he or she is employed as an officer will render a candidate "retired" and ineligible for office.” He states that the “UBC Pension Plan” is “express language” but refutes “retired” is not “express language” but rather “generic”. With this “explicit” reasoning, are we then to draw the conclusion that there are supposed to be two “international” pension plans because Section 31B and 31D state “United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan” while Sections 45G and 59A state “United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America Pension Plan”? A lawyer may, but UBC members do not. However, if the “explicit” versus “generic” distinction is meaningful, then the term “retired” is so basic that its definition is clear, unequivocal, and indisputable. Foregoing the definition given by ERISA, http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/29/usc_sec_29_00001002----000-.html, the definition given by the Merriam-Webster dictionary is: “retired: 2 : withdrawn from one's position or occupation : having concluded one's working or professional career”. Additionally, “retire: 4 : to withdraw from one's position or occupation : conclude one's working or professional career”. Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. 2009. http://www.merriam-webster.com (2009 Sep 14). Bennett attempts to make ambiguous the definition of “retired” in the UBC Constitution while he ignores the NYCDCC Pension Plan and ERISA. In any case, in plain English, “retired” means retired and the receipt of pension plan benefits is incontrovertible acceptance to being retired.

5. Moreover, the disqualifying statement of “a member cannot hold office or the position of Delegate or a Committee position, or be nominated for office, Delegate or a Committee position, if receiving a pension under the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan” when read explicitly that only the UBC Pension Plan is the only disqualifying pension plan this statement is made almost meaningless due to that NYC local union carpenter member, as well as the vast majority of the members within the jurisdiction of the UBCJA, do not contribute to the UBC Pension Plan. There appears to be about 4,600 participants (which would include members and employees) to the UBC Pension Plan. There are approximately 550,000 members within the UBC. Because I am unable to determine at this time how many of the 4,600 are members I will default to use of all 4,600 as members. 4,600 divided by 550,000 is approximately 0.84%. That means that less than 1% of the membership contributes to the UBC Pension Plan. Additionally of note is that the UBC Pension Plan’s effective date is later than the two NYCDCC pension plans’ effect dates. The New York District Council of Carpenters Pension Plan, 51-0174276, started January 01, 1956. The Retirement and Pension Plan for Officers and Employees of the NYDCC and Related Organizations, 51-0167964, started April 01, 1961. The United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan, EIN 52-6075035, started January 01, 1967.


Sincerely,
/s/ Daniel J. Franco /s/
Local Union 157, UBC

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 10:43 PM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


I did not receive a response to my pension issue letter dated 2009-01-09 to McCarron. The response of which I had remembered from McCarron (dated February 23, 2009) was to Davenport's letter.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" cautero.gregg@dol.gov
Date: Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 10:03 PM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


Has the investigation begun regarding the issues of retirement, pension benefits, and union carpenter officers and employees?

If an investigation has begun, what is the approximate or expected duration of the investigation before a determination may be rendered?

If [an] investigation has not begun, why has it not begun and what is the approximate or expected wait for the investigation to begin?


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Cautero, Gregg L - ESA Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
To: "Daniel J. Franco" danieljfranco1@gmail.com
Date: Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 9:49 AM
Subject: RE: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Mr. Franco,

Your complaint is currently being evaluated, someone from the agency will contact you when the review has been completed.

Thank you for your patience.

Gregg L. Cautero, Investigator
U.S. Department of Labor - OLMS
201 Varick St.
New York, NY 10014
(646) 264-3149 (phone)
(646) 264-3191 (fax)

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Thu, Sep 17, 2009 at 7:44 AM
Subject: RE: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


Thank you for your response.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA"
Date: Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 8:08 AM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero,


As you know, I submitted a letter to the US DOL September 9, 2009 regarding “Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees”. I had asked for determinations that concur that:
1. the receipt of pension plan benefits equates retirement,
2. those who are receiving pension plan benefits or any other type of retirement benefit from any source directly associated with or to carpenter local unions, affiliated councils, or the UBCJA cannot hold office or the position of Delegate or a committee position, or be nominated for office, Delegate or a committee position,
3. all carpenters’ union pension/retirement plans within the UBCJA are the equivalent of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Pension Plan with respect to eligibility for office,
4. those receiving pension plan/retirement benefits, and therefore retired, to have been ineligible as a candidate in the 2008 NYCDCC election, and
5. those receiving pension plan/retirement benefits, and therefore retired, to have been ineligible as a candidate in any election, delegates, or committee member, since at least the implementation of the January 1, 2006 UBC Constitution.

Today is September 30, 2009. I am at a loss to understand why the US DOL is taking so long to respond to my inquiries. It is now 21 days since I submitted my letter of inquires. Unless there is something I fail to understand or know, the information and logic I have provided should be sufficient for determinations to my inquiries. Please know that I cannot let this inquiry languish in limbo indefinitely. If there is something I fail to understand, please if you would, touch upon what it may be and explain why such determinations are taking so long. If three weeks time is not considered lengthy, please let me know the typical/ standard/ approximate amount of time similar investigations have taken so that I can have some idea as to how patient I am supposed to be.

Additionally, if you are no longer the person to contact regarding my inquiries please let me know whom I should email or telephone in the future.

I thank you for your time and cooperation with this matter.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Cautero, Gregg L – ESA
To: Daniel J. Franco
Date: Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 12:09 PM
Subject: RE: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Mr. Franco,


I will inquire about this with my National Office and see what the status is.


Gregg L. Cautero, Investigator
U.S. Department of Labor - OLMS
201 Varick St.
New York, NY 10014
(646) 264-3149 (phone)
(646) 264-3191 (fax)

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 12:25 PM
Subject: Re: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


Thank you for your timely response.

I truly appreciate your attention to this matter.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Daniel J. Franco danieljfranco1@gmail.com
To: "Cautero, Gregg L - ESA" Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
Date: Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 2:56 PM
Subject: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Dear Mr. Cautero:


On Wednesday, September 30, 2009, I sent to you an email in which I stated that I am at a loss to understand why the US DOL is taking so long to respond to my inquiries. It is now 26 days since I submitted my letter of inquires.

Again, please know that I will not allow my inquiry to languish. Again, unless there is something I fail to understand or know, the information and logic I have provided should be sufficient for determinations to my inquiries. If there is something I fail to understand, please let me know what it may be and explain why such determinations are taking so long. If four weeks time is not considered lengthy, please let me know the typical/ standard/ approximate amount of time similar investigations have taken so that I can have some idea as to how patient I am supposed to be.

Five days ago, in your reply email on September 30, 2009, you stated, “I will inquire about this with my National Office and see what the status is."

Therefore, what is the status with the National Office of my inquiries? Again, if you are no longer the person to contact please let me know to whom I should email or telephone in the future so that I do not [wish to] frustrate you with my continuing inquiry regarding my initial inquiries.


Sincerely,
Daniel J. Franco

Daniel J. Franco said...

From: Cautero, Gregg L - ESA Cautero.Gregg@dol.gov
To: "Daniel J. Franco" danieljfranco1@gmail.com
Date: Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 3:13 PM
Subject: RE: Retirement, Pension Benefits, and Union Carpenter Officers and Employees


Mr. Franco:

I hope to have a response for you by Thursday, at which time I should be able to give you a better update.

Thank you,

Gregg


Gregg L. Cautero, Investigator
U.S. Department of Labor - OLMS
201 Varick St.
New York, NY 10014
(646) 264-3149 (phone)
(646) 264-3191 (fax)

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