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Franco for NYCDCC President 2012 - LU Forum Speech

:: Elect Dan Franco NYCDCC President ::

(For those of you who don't already know me,) my name is Dan Franco. I'm a local 157 member. I joined local 257 in October 1989 as a first year apprentice. I have been certified UBC steward since July 2010. My carpentry experience includes layout, protection systems, metal framing, wood framing, drywall, acoustical ceilings, doors, hardware, architectural woodwork, cabinet and furniture making, office furniture systems, and more.
Currently, I am working as a steward for Donaldson Interiors since March 7, 2012, in Manhattan.

Current Situation of our Council:
The administration of our affairs at our council is still quite troubled. I know this by documentation and by observation. Numerous Bylaw and Rules of Order violations have occurred during delegate meetings and many Constitution and Bylaw violations have occurred outside of meetings.

If you haven't personally observed the delegate meetings or if you haven't read any related documentation, such as the delegate meeting minutes and attachments, the RO reports, the court documents, you are not likely to know this. And if you haven't yet attended a delegates meeting, I strongly encourage you to do so.

There is a minority of delegates that have attempted to address these violations but they have been largely been ignored. Additionally, a few delegates have been ridiculed and harassed not so much by other delegates but by the former president and the EST themselves.

There have been motions, policies, and contracts that have been put into effect that should not have even been entertained, such as: the banning of the Member Gallery; 10% off Hudson Yards job; 20% off concrete projects; “red-flagging”; the 3 dispatch rule; making motions via email; requesting financial background checks on stewards; the providing of the WC&C contract addendum the night before a voting; the list goes on but the biggest blunder of all was the acceptance of 'full-mobility'.

The administration of our council must not continue this way. A competent president would not have let any of this occur to this degree. The administration of our Council must not merely change; it must be corrected.

Of what benefit to the members would I be as president?
As president, it will be my duty “to preside at all the meetings of the Council, enforce a due observance of the Constitution and Laws of the [UBC], conduct the same according to parliamentary rules and perform such other duties as designated by the [delegate] body.”

The president is also one of the 11 members of the Council Executive Committee. Some of the Executive Committee duties are:
  1. Preparing annual budgets for the Council and make recommendations the Delegate Body on purchases over $1,000. As president and Executive Committee Member, I will influence the Council to be operated more like a family household than a corporation – people before profit, members before money, but always prudent with our resources, money, and time.
  2. Developing the Council Personnel Policy. To make recommendations to the Delegate Body for hiring, disciplining, compensating, and terminating Council employees, which includes the Inspector General (IG) [Danielson], Deputy IG [Leicht], Chief Compliance Office (CCO) [Leicht], Deputy Chief Compliance Officer [Danielson], Director of Human Resources [Brownstein], Chief Accountant [Montreuil], Director of Operations (DoO) [Walker], and Director of Organizing [McWilliams], as well as Council managers, reps, agents, and organizers.
  3. Having the responsibility to provide information about the Council to the membership and the public, including the publishing The Carpenter magazine and maintaining the website. Agitate, Educate, Organize! Information is power and informing the membership is empowering the membership. To impede information is to impede democracy. Transparency has done more to protect people than secrecy will ever do. Knowledge is freedom and ignorance is slavery to those who govern us. (See also
  4. Having the responsibility to draft and recommend to the Delegate Body:
    1. the overall organizing plan, which must include better coverage of the residential and light commercial markets. Without a viable and aggressive organizing plan in these markets our union's existence is always undermined/threatened, and our job opportunities lessened.
    2. Collective Bargaining Agreements and PLA's, which includes the allocations of wages and benefits. As president, I would seek to have the necessary amount go toward the Welfare Plan to get back at least some, preferably all, of our former coverage.
    3. Changes to the Bylaws. One major change I seek is to have the Bylaws amended to give contract ratification to the membership.
    4. A system of steward review. No system of review/ discipline /punishment should be implemented without input from those affected. A “system of steward review” should not be implemented until input is sought from stewards for the development and maintenance said system.
    5. Submitting written reports on Council operations, financial condition, and other relevant matters to the Delegate Body at EACH meeting of the Council Delegate Body.

Why you should elect me president:
Because I understand, apparently far better than any other candidate, the UBC Constitution, the NYCDCC bylaws, Robert's Rules of Order, the NYCDCC Personnel Policy, the Consent Decree, the Stipulation and Order appointing the RO, the LMRDA, the NLRA, and many other necessary documents, I am able to competently and honestly perform the duties of the president.

So far, the other candidates are unable to recognize or unwilling to admit to ANY of the numerous Rules of Order, Bylaw and Constitution violations that have occurred. Apparently, the other candidates are barely aware of  the duties of the president and the rules the president is supposed to abide by and uphold.

I do not flip-flop on issues. I am the ONLY candidate against full-mobility. Make no mistake, all the other candidates are for full-mobility. Full-mobility is anti-union. It transfers near complete control to the contractors of not just job sites but also our union. Full-mobility was/is not sought by contractors primarily for project cost reduction. It was/is sought primarily for contractor control, pure and simple.

While I am the most independent candidate and I am also the most closely connected to the rank-and-file. I am an on-the-tools steward. I am not an employee of the council, nor do I seek to be an employee of the council. I do not have any relatives that work at the Council. I am not controlled by any political party or politician. I cannot be swayed to wrong by gifts or money.

What is right is right. What is wrong is wrong. My personal gain alone is meaningless to me if the members as a whole do not benefit. As president I will not just fall-in-line. Unity and conformity for their own sake ultimately will lead us to failure. To follow our so-called leaders without question will lead us to ruin. I will support those who are doing right for the members and will oppose those who are not. At first discretely; if needed, publicly.

Again, my name is Dan Franco. So, on December 20, I am asking for you to please vote Dan Franco for a better run council. A council run for the members, not the oligarchs.

If you have any questions or comments you can contact me via my mobile number, email, or this website.

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