National Labor Relations Board v. Idaho Refining Co.

Decision Date22 June 1944
Docket NumberNo. 10583.,10583.
Citation143 F.2d 246
CourtU.S. Court of Appeals — Ninth Circuit

Alvin J. Rockwell, Gen. Counsel, Howard Lichtenstein, Asst. Gen. Counsel, and William J. Isaacson, Isadore Greenberg, and Charles F. McErlean, Attys., N. L. R. B., all of Washington, D. C., for petitioner.

Henry D. Moyle and David L. McKay, both of Salt Lake City, Utah, and A. L. Merrill and R. D. Merrill, both of Pocatello, Idaho, for respondent.

Before STEPHENS and HEALY, Circuit Judges, and FEE, District Judge.

STEPHENS, Circuit Judge.

Idaho Refining Company, respondent here, is a Nevada corporation, and its principal place of business is Pocatello, Idaho. It refines, transports and distributes petroleum and petroleum products. It owns Covey Gas and Oil Company and controls Idaho Gas and Oil Company. During the period in which the events pertinent to this proceeding were happening respondent had shipped to it in Idaho from other states, and it shipped from Idaho to other states, substantial amounts of material. It is engaged in interstate commerce, and it is subject to the orders of the National Labor Relations Board. The National Labor Relations Board will herein be designated as the Board, and the National Labor Relations Act, which provides for the Board and contains the references to the Act herein made, will be designated as the Act. 49 Stat. 449, 29 U.S.C.A. § 151 et seq.

After two charges had been filed with the Board and the Board had issued its consolidated complaint, and after the filing of respondent's denial of all or any unfair labor practices, a hearing was had, and after submission of the case the Board issued its order. Briefly, the order, under authority of § 10(c) of the Act, 29 U.S. C.A. § 160(c), commands respondent

(a) To cease and desist from dominating or interfering with the administration of the Idaho Refining Company Employees' Benefit and Labor Association, or with the formation or administration of any other labor organization of its employees, and from giving financial or other support to any labor organization of its employees (b) From reorganizing or dealing with Idaho Refining Company Employees' Benefit and Labor Association as representative of any of respondent's employees upon any matter coming within the jurisdiction of the Board;

(c) From performing or giving effect to the contract of June 1, 1942, between it and the association above named or relating to a renewal, extension or change of such contract or to any other agreement of any kind with the association within the scope of the Board's jurisdiction;

(d) From discouraging membership of its employees in Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers, Local No. 983 or International Association of Machinists, Local No. 198, affiliates of A. F. of L., or any other labor organization "by discharging or refusing to reinstate, or in any other manner discriminating in regard to their hire or tenure of employment";

(e) From in any other manner interfering with any of its employees' rights guaranteed by § 7 of the Act.

To take affirmative action as follows:

(a) Withdraw entirely from recognizing or dealing with Idaho Refining Company Employees' Benefit and Labor Association as to any matters within the jurisdiction of the Board and disestablish the association as employee representative;

(b) Offer immediate and full reinstatement to certain hereinafter designated employees in their former or substantially equivalent positions without prejudice to their seniority and other rights and privileges;

(c) Make whole certain reinstated employees;

(d) Make whole R. E. Miller R. E. Miller was one of the men discharged but (b) does not apply to him because he has been reinstated in employment but has not been made whole;

(e) Post notices of compliance;

(f) Notify the Regional Director of action taken under the order.

The Board petitions this court to order enforcement, and respondent resists the petition.

This case presents the situation, not unusual in Board order enforcement cases, in which the employer earnestly believes in his case, and asks us to consider the evidence as a whole and decide that it does not support the findings of the Board. The employer is remotely aware of the fact that we cannot weigh the evidence and that our only function is to decide whether or not the Board has acted within the law, including, as this function does, the decision as to whether there is any supporting evidence for the findings. Section 10(e) of the Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 160(e): "The findings of the Board as to the facts, if supported by evidence, shall be conclusive." The employer, however, argues that all of the evidence put together produces a whole which, reasonably viewed, does not show unfair labor practices. Usually he means that the evidence does not show intention to be unfair, but he understands the word "unfair" in its common meaning and not in its meaning as defined in the labor act. Section 8 of the Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 158: "It shall be an unfair labor practice for an employer — (1) To interfere with, restrain, or coerce employees in the exercise of the rights guaranteed in Section 157 of this title." Section 7 of the Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 157: "Employees shall have the right to self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing, and to engage in concerted activities, for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection."

While there may be cases in which unfair labor practices have been found by the Board as to which the overall viewpoint would demonstrate that no unfair practice is present, this case is not one of them. For each violation of the Act found we must lend our order of enforcement if there is evidence from which an interference can be drawn in support of the finding. N. L. R. B. v. J. G. Boswell Co., 9 Cir., 136 F.2d 585-589.

Wherever in this opinion we state evidence as fact, we do it because in the support of the Board's findings, in general, we are bound to assume the supporting evidence as true.

The first point made by the Board in its opening brief refers to the violation of § 8(2) of the Act, 29 U.S.C.A. § 158 (2), wherein it is made an unfair practice to dominate or interfere with the formation or administration of any labor organization or to contribute financial or other support to it. The violation consists of respondent's relations with the Idaho Refining Company Employees' Benefit and Labor Association, a company union. There is evidence that officials and supervisors of the Covey and Idaho companies were organization members of the Association, and some of them held offices in that organization. N. L. R. B. v. Boswell, supra, 136 F.2d at page 593. Respondent permitted the Association's notices to be distributed during working hours and the posting of such notices on the plant bulletin boards; permitted the organizational meeting and subsequent meetings to be held on company premises; gave soft drink and tobacco and...

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1 cases
  • National Labor Rel. Board v. Walt Disney Productions, 10603.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Ninth Circuit
    • January 11, 1945
    ...function of this court in its consideration of enforcement petitions is made in our recent opinion of National Labor Relations Board v. Idaho Refining Co., 9 Cir., 1944, 143 F.2d 246, 247: "This case presents the situation, not unusual in Board order enforcement cases, in which the employer......

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