27 NMB No. 100
August 11, 2000
Ellen C. Ham, Esq.
Timothy L. Covington, Esq.
Counsels for Mesaba Aviation, Inc.
Ford & Harrison, L.L.P.
1275 Peachtree Street, N.E., Suite 600
Atlanta, GA 30309
Ronald C. Henson, Esq.
Counsel for Mesaba Aviation, Inc.
Ford & Harrison, L.L.P.
1300 19th Street, NW., Suite 700
Washington, DC 20036
Mr. R. Thomas Buffenbarger, Int'l President
Mr. Robert J. Roach, Jr., Gen. Vice President
David Neigus, Esq.
International Association of Machinists
and Aerospace Workers Union, AFL-CIO
9000 Machinists Place
Upper Marlboro, MD 20722
Re: NMB Case No. R-6745
Mesaba Aviation, Inc.
Gentlemen and Ms. Ham:
This determination addresses the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, AFL-CIO (IAM or Organization), election interference allegations. For the reasons set forth below, the Board finds there is no basis for further investigation and therefore, dismisses the allegations.
On April 7, 2000, the IAM filed an application pursuant to 45 U.S.C. § 152, Ninth, alleging a representation dispute among Fleet and Passenger Service Employees of Mesaba Aviation, Inc. (Mesaba or Carrier). On April 27, 2000, the Board found a dispute existed and authorized an election. Ballots were mailed May 23, 2000, and the count took place June 21, 2000. The IAM received 316 votes out of 924 eligible voters. Two votes were cast for other organizations. The total number of valid votes cast was less than the majority required for Board certification. The Board issued a Dismissal on June 22, 2000, Mesaba Aviation, Inc., 27 NMB 439.
On June 30, 2000, pursuant to Section 14.0 of the Board's Representation Manual, the IAM filed allegations of election interference. The Carrier filed a response on July 19, 2000.
The Organization alleged that Mesaba failed to provide current address labels for the ballots mailed to eligible employees. Therefore, the IAM asserted that some employees did not receive ballots. The Organization also contended that the Carrier used a more current address list to mail other correspondence such as campaign-related correspondence. In addition, IAM maintained that certain employees who requested duplicate ballots did not receive them and that other employees did not receive their ballots in time to vote.
The Organization provided an affidavit from one employee stating he did not receive a ballot in time to vote. The IAM also submitted a list of names of Mesaba employees who allegedly did not receive their original ballots and/or duplicate ballots.(1) The IAM requests a re-run election with an employee home address list provided to the Organization.
Mesaba argued that the Organization failed to provide credible evidence to support its allegations and, therefore, the allegations should be dismissed. According to Mesaba, it provided the Board with current employee addresses. The Carrier also cited Section 12.206-2 of the Manual which provides that the names of employees whose ballots are undeliverable must be removed from the eligibility list. The Carrier noted that only eight names, less than one percent, were removed from the eligibility list.
Section 14.0 of the Manual provides, in part, as follows:
Allegations of election interference must state a prima facie case that the laboratory conditions were tainted and must be supported by substantial evidence in the form of affidavits and documents which is direct, credible and corroborative. Allegations of election interference not sufficiently supported by substantive evidence will not provide a basis for further investigation and will be dismissed.
The Board's review of the record in this case establishes that the ballot of the employee who alleged he did not receive his ballot in time to vote was received and counted. Further, three of the five individuals who allegedly never received the duplicate ballots, never requested a duplicate ballot and their original ballots were not returned as undeliverable. The other two individuals' ballots were returned as undeliverable, and they did not request duplicates.
The Board received six timely duplicate ballot requests which were processed immediately and four untimely duplicate ballot requests. There were seventeen ballots returned as undeliverable, nine were re-mailed. There were eight undeliverable ballots on the count date. Pursuant to Section 12.202-2 of the Manual, those eight names were removed from the list. The Board finds that the Organization has not sufficiently supported its allegations with substantive evidence.
The Organization's submission does not support a prima facie case that the laboratory conditions were tainted, and there is no basis for further investigation. The IAM's allegations are dismissed.
By direction of the NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD.
Stephen E. Crable
Chief of Staff
1. None of the employee names submitted by the IAM was provided to Mesaba.