Reply – Re: Treasury Department Rejects Proposal to Cut Retiree Benefits
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Re: Treasury Department Rejects Proposal to Cut Retiree Benefits
— by Ted Ted
NLRB rejects proposal by STAFFCO (Brooklyn, NY) to cut Nurses Pension Payments after expiration of Contract, post merger:


A. Background
The Respondent is a registered New York State Professional Employer Organization. The State University
of New York (SUNY) operates SUNY Downstate Medical Center (SUNY Downstate), which is an academic
medical center. In May 2011, SUNY acquired Long Island College Hospital (LICH). In connection with its
acquisition of LICH, SUNY Downstate contracted with the Respondent to hire and employ the nonphysician staff at the LICH facilities. The Respondent recognized the Union as the collective-bargaining representative for a bargaining unit of registered nurses and nurse practitioners who worked at LICH and in LICH clinics at area schools.

C. Discussion

Following the expiration of a collective-bargaining agreement, an employer must maintain the status quo on all mandatory subjects of bargaining until the parties either agree on a new contract or reach a good-faith impasse in negotiations. Triple A Fire Protection, Inc., 315 NLRB 409, 414 (1994), enfd. 136 F.3d 727 (11th Cir. 1998), cert. denied 525 U.S. 1067 (1999).

An employer’s obligation to maintain the status quo includes “making contributions to fringe benefit funds as specified in the expired collective-bargaining agreement.” N. D. Peters & Co., 321 NLRB 927, 928 (1996). Pension plan contributions that are required by an expired collective bargaining agreement are terms and conditions of employment that survive contract expiration, and such contributions may not be unilaterally discontinued or otherwise altered absent impasse or waiver. KBMS, Inc., 278 NLRB 826, 849 (1986).

A union may waive its right to maintenance of the status quo as to a particular term or condition so long as the waiver, like the waiver of any statutory right, is “clear and unmistakable.” Provena St. Joseph Medical Center, 350 NLRB 808, 810–812 (2007). A clear and unmistakable waiver requires “bargaining partners to unequivocally and specifically express their mutual intention to permit unilateral employer action with respect to a particular employment term, notwithstanding the statutory duty to bargain that would
otherwise apply.” Id. at 811.



Retirees may also benefit under status quo language relative to their Health Benefits contracted for (promised upon retirement) and subsequently unilaterally (post retirement) taken away by Trustees without negotiation to impasse with the retiree(s) representative.

The Trustees of the Union and the Benefit Funds are all fiduciaries; thus negotiating with themselves is not only one sided, it does not fall under mandates of the NLRA, ERISA, SEC reg's etc. and appears to be both illogical as well as illegal under current laws particularly when said operators/trustees/fiduciaries of such Funds collected the hourly contributions for all those years and Man-Hours you worked & contributed for your current Health Benefits as well as your Retirement Health Benefits under successive Collective Bargaining Agreements (CBA's).

Just because the so called operators have mismanaged/abused/stolen/off-shored funds and/or lost their asses in whatever investment vehicles their alleged brain-trust chose to invest in; said ineptitude does not amount to your having to sacrifice bargained for rights or contracted for benefits on a "because I said so" basis - the std. UBCJA & Beneift Trust Fund modus-operandi.

Racketeering charges can & should be preferred against the so called operators/trustees/fiduciaries including their legal counsel (Raymond McGuire and or his successors) both personally and professionally in their capacity at the time of such racketeering/theft/off-shoring etc.