Election Supervisor's first report to the BLET
Overview of the Procedure for
to the 27th IBT
from the IBT Rail Conference
As a result of the Merger Agreement between the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen, ("Merger Agreement"), BLET members are now part of the IBT Rail Conference and known as the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen ("BLET"). Pursuant to the Merger Agreement, BLET General Committees of Adjustment must elect delegates to send to the 27th IBT International Convention, to be held in Las Vegas, Nevada in June 2006. General Committees must conduct the election of IBT convention delegates and alternate delegates using the procedures in the proposed 2006 Rules for the 2005-2006 IBT International Union Delegate and Officer Election (the "2006 Rules"). The election of IBT Convention delegates and alternate delegates must be conducted entirely separately from the election of delegates to the BLET Convention. Delegate and alternate delegate nominations to the IBT Convention will be held in the BLET General Committees from January 1, 2006 through March 10, 2006. The election time period is from February 20, 2006 until April 30, 2006.
I. Introduction to the Process
The rules and procedures for electing IBT convention delegates are basically those that the IBT has followed in its International Officer elections every five years since 1991. In broad outline, IBT local unions elect delegates to the IBT International Convention. Under the merger agreement, the BLET General Committees are treated as IBT local unions for the purpose of electing convention delegates.
At the convention, the delegates nominate candidates for IBT International Office. To obtain nomination, an individual must receive at least 5% of the delegate votes from the relevant voting pool (that is, a candidate for an office voted on by the entire membership must receive votes of at least 5% of all the delegates; a candidate for regional office (that is, IBT Regional Vice-President) must receive votes of at least 5% of all the delegates from the particular geographic region). A period for candidate campaigning follows the convention. The members then vote by secret ballot, distributed and returned through the mail, in a direct referendum to elect the IBT's International Officers. The schedule calls for the balloting to be completed in November, 2006.
The entire process is overseen by an Election Supervisor appointed by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, with the mutual agreement of the IBT and the United States government. The Election Supervisor: a) oversees the General Committees' conduct of the delegate elections; b) enforces the election rules, including the adjudication of election protests filed during the conduct of the election and the enforcement of campaign finance rules; c) conducts the nomination for International Officer candidates at the IBT International Convention; and d) conducts the balloting for the International Officers. The Election Supervisor is responsible for insuring that the 2005-2006 IBT International Officer election, including all delegate elections, is conducted in a free, fair and democratic manner.
II. Contacting the Election Supervisor's Office
The Election Supervisor is Richard W. Mark. The Election Supervisor's office is located in Washington, D.C., at the following address:
The Election Supervisor has established a website to make information about election procedures, necessary forms, and election protest decisions accessible to the entire IBT membership, including those IBT members in the BLET. The web address is: www.ibtvote.org
Regional Directors for the Election Supervisor's Office are in place around the United States and in Canada to provide information about the election and to provide assistance to General Committees of Adjustment conducting delegate elections, and to members, as needed. The contact information for the Regional Directors follows:
III. Election of Delegates from General Committees of Adjustment
The Merger Agreement provides that each GCA with 100 or more active members is entitled to nominate and elect delegates and alternate delegates according to the representation formula of the IBT Constitution - one delegate for up to the first 1,000 members, with one additional delegate for each additional 750 members or major fraction thereof. Article § 6.16 of the Merger Agreement requires the consolidation of GCAs with less than 100 active members, only for the purpose of electing IBT Convention delegates. Consolidated entities are entitled to elect delegates in accordance with the IBT Constitutional provisions for electing delegates as though they constituted a single GCA. The Office of the Election Supervisor expects to provide notice shortly after October 31, 2005 to those GCAs with less than 100 active members that will be subject to consolidation. For purposes of electing IBT Convention delegates and alternate delegates only, GCAs will be merged into consolidated entities according to IBT regions in which they are located. The BLET National Division requested and the Election Supervisor has agreed, to conduct the election for IBT convention delegates and alternate delegates in the consolidated entities.
Each GCA has been instructed to prepare a delegate election plan in accordance with the 2006 Rules and has been sent written guidance on how to prepare the plan. The completed plan must be submitted to the Election Supervisor by November 16, 2005. The delegate election plan spells out how your GCA will carry out the procedures for conducting the nomination and election of IBT convention delegates, including dates and procedures for nominating candidates for delegate and alternate delegate, dates and procedures relating to the mail ballot election for IBT convention delegates and alternate delegates, and the person at the GCA responsible for conducting the delegate election. Interested persons have 15 days after a plan is sent to the Election Supervisor to request a copy of the plan from your GCA and to submit comments to the Election Supervisor on the provisions of the GCA delegate election plan. As delegate election plans are reviewed and approved, the Election Supervisor's website, www.ibtvote.org, will post a master calendar of dates relating to the election of convention delegates. You should also receive individual notice by mail of delegate nomination and election events at your GCA, and schedule information should also be posted on the BLET website and (where feasible) union bulletin boards.
In order to be eligible to run as a delegate or alternate delegate candidate from your GCA, you must be in one month good standing through the month prior to the month in which the nomination meeting is held. The Rules allow for the nomination and seconding of candidates in writing, submitted to your GCA one day prior to the scheduled nomination meeting, and also allow for a candidate to accept nomination in person, or if absent, in writing, at the time of nomination. These provisions allow members interested in running for convention delegate, and their nominators and seconders, to participate in the process even though they may not be able to attend a nomination meeting in person. Consult Article II of the 2006 Rules, and your delegate election plan for details on how to accomplish candidate nominations, seconds and acceptances in writing.
IV. The 2006 Rules
Copies of the 2006 Rules were previously transmitted to all General Committees within the BLET. You may obtain a copy of the proposed 2006 Rules yourself by visiting our website at www.ibtvote.org, or by calling or writing the Election Supervisor's Office to request a copy.
V. Candidate Accreditation
The 2006 Rules provide that members interested in running for IBT International Office may become accredited and be eligible to obtain access to membership lists and have campaign literature published in the Teamster. Article X, §1 of the 2006 Rules explains the procedures and requirements for becoming accredited. The Election Supervisor's official forms for accreditation and the number of member signatures required to become accredited are available at www.ibtvote.org
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We will continue to provide updates on our work for the 2005-2006 IBT International Union Delegate and Officer Election in upcoming issues of the Locomotive Engineers & Trainmen News, Rail Teamster and Teamster.
© 2005 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen