Wirtz v. LOCAL UNIONS 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, INT. U. OF OP. ENG., No. 337

CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
Writing for the CourtPER CURIAM
Citation366 F.2d 438
PartiesW. Willard WIRTZ, Secretary of Labor, United States Department of Labor, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. LOCAL UNIONS 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, INTERNATIONAL UNION OF OPERATING ENGINEERS, Defendant-Respondent. W. Willard WIRTZ, Secretary of Labor, United States Department of Labor, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. LOCAL 30, INTERNATIONAL UNION OF OPERATING ENGINEERS, Defendant-Respondent.
Docket NumberDockets 29998 and 30085.,No. 337,338
Decision Date01 August 1966

366 F.2d 438 (1966)

W. Willard WIRTZ, Secretary of Labor, United States Department of Labor, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
LOCAL UNIONS 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, INTERNATIONAL UNION OF OPERATING ENGINEERS, Defendant-Respondent.

W. Willard WIRTZ, Secretary of Labor, United States Department of Labor, Plaintiff-Appellant,
v.
LOCAL 30, INTERNATIONAL UNION OF OPERATING ENGINEERS, Defendant-Respondent.

Nos. 337, 338, Dockets 29998 and 30085.

United States Court of Appeals Second Circuit.

Argued May 11, 1966.

Decided August 1, 1966.

Rehearing Denied October 4, 1966.


366 F.2d 439
COPYRIGHT MATERIAL OMITTED
366 F.2d 440
Arthur S. Olick, Asst. U. S. Atty., Southern Dist. of New York (Robert M. Morgenthau, U. S. Atty., Robert E. Kushner, and Lawrence W. Schilling, Asst. U. S. Attys., Southern Dist. of New York, and Justin J. Mahoney, U. S. Atty., Northern Dist. of New York, on the brief), for plaintiff-appellant

Bernard T. King, Syracuse, N. Y. (Blitman, Carrigan & King and Nathan H. Blitman, Syracuse, N. Y., on the brief), for defendant-appellee Local Unions 410, 410A, 410B, and 410C, International Union of Operating Engineers.

William J. Corcoran, New York City, for defendant-respondent Local 30, International Union of Operating Engineers.

Before LUMBARD, Chief Judge, and WATERMAN and KAUFMAN, Circuit Judges.

LUMBARD, Chief Judge.

These are two separate suits brought by the Secretary of Labor against locals of the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) to set aside 1962 union elections on the ground that provisions of the IUOE's constitution, as adopted and applied by the locals, violated § 401(e) of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959, 29 U.S.C. § 481(e), by depriving union members of a "reasonable opportunity" to be candidates for union office. Both

366 F.2d 441
district courts1 held that the Secretary had failed to prove that any violations of the Act "may have affected the outcome" of the elections in question. 29 U.S.C. § 482(c) (2). Each local conducted an election in 1965 subsequent to the district court decision in its favor. As we hold that this fact has made both appeals moot, the two cases will be treated together in this opinion. Each case is remanded with instructions to the district court to vacate its dismissal on the merits and to dismiss the complaint as moot

I.

Local 30 is a union of licensed Stationary Engineers (those in charge of boilers, engines, pumps and refrigeration equipment in industrial plants) located in New York City and affiliated with IUOE. Local 410, located in Binghamton, New York, is an IUOE affiliate composed of journeymen engineers who operate power cranes, shovels and similar heavy equipment.

Affiliated locals must adopt the provisions of IUOE's constitution pertaining to the eligibility of union members for union office. The constitutional qualifications which prospective candidates must possess include the following:

(a) "Continuous good standing" for one year, i. e., payment of union dues on or before the first day of each month of the entire year preceding the election.
(b) The filing of a "declaration of candidacy" on or before January 15th of the election year.
(c) The filing of a non-Communist affidavit.
(d) Attendance at a majority of the regular meetings held between his declaration of candidacy and the election date.2

After Local 30 and Local 410 held elections in 1962 in which incumbent officers and "close associates" were elected without opposition, union members who had been rejected as candidates because of their failure to comply with the above requirements lodged complaints with their respective locals and, when their IUOE remedies were exhausted unsuccessfully, protested to the Secretary that they had been illegally deprived of their right to stand for office. These complaints being timely, see 29 U.S.C. § 482 (a) (1), the Secretary investigated the challenged elections and brought these suits to have them set aside and conducted again under his supervision. 29 U.S.C. § 482(b).

The complaint against Local 410 charged that its "continuous good standing" rule was not a "reasonable qualification uniformly imposed," 29 U.S.C. § 481(e), and hence that members of the local had been deprived of their right to seek office. The complaint against Local 30 charged that its "declaration of candidacy" rule was likewise unreasonable and in addition that Local 30 had failed to give its members adequate notice of the 1962 election so that prospective candidates might comply with this rule. Judge Metzner agreed that the declaration of candidacy rule violated § 481(e) but held that the Secretary had failed to prove that enforcement of that rule may have affected the outcome of Local 30's election. Judge Port also dismissed the complaint against Local 410 on this ground; he assumed without deciding that the continuous good standing rule violated the Act.

Shortly after the decisions of the district courts, both locals held 1965 elections in accordance with the IUOE constitution and the LMRDA's requirement that elections be held at least triennially. 29 U.S.C. § 481(b). Thus, the present officers of each local are not holding office pursuant to the challenged 1962 elections. We conclude that, in

366 F.2d 442
light of the statutory scheme in question, these subsequent elections render both cases moot

"A federal court is without power to decide moot questions or to give advisory opinions which cannot affect the rights of the litigants in the case before it." St. Pierre v. United States, 319 U.S. 41, 42, 63 S.Ct. 910, 911, 87 L.Ed. 1199 (1943). Since the rights of litigants are affected by the judicial remedies available, in evaluating whether a particular appeal has become moot, attention must be focused on the particular relief sought by the appellant. See generally Diamond, Federal Jurisdiction to Decide Moot Cases, 94 U.Pa.L.Rev. 125 (1946).

The exclusive remedy which Congress has created for challenging a union election, see 29 U.S.C. § 483, is a suit by the Secretary to declare the election void and to direct the conduct of a new election. This suit may only be brought after a union member has made a proper complaint to the Secretary and after the Secretary has made a finding of probable cause to believe that a violation of § 481 has occurred. Congress intentionally created a narrow remedy under Title IV of the LMRDA so that interference with union elections and management would be kept at a minimum. See Calhoon v. Harvey, 379 U.S. 134,...

To continue reading

Request your trial
37 practice notes
  • Hodgson v. CARPENTERS RESILIENT FLOORING LOCAL U. NO. 2212, No. 19507.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (3rd Circuit)
    • 27 Marzo 1972
    ...denied, 386 U.S. 996, 87 S.Ct. 1316, 18 L.Ed.2d 244 (1967); Wirtz v. Local Unions 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, etc., Operating Engineers, 366 F.2d 438 (2d Cir. 1966); Schultz v. United Steelworkers of America (District 15), 312 F.Supp. 1044 (W.D.Pa.1970); Wirtz v. Local Union No. 1377, I.B.E......
  • McLaughlin v. American Federation of Musicians, No. 88 Civ. 1540 (RJW).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • 23 Noviembre 1988
    ...of a particular election. Id. at 507, 88 S.Ct. at 1752, (quoting from Wirtz v. Local Union 410, Int'l Union of Operating Engineers, 366 F.2d 438, 443 (2d Cir.1966). Defendant asserts that the Secretary has not shown the conceded violation, or any of the alleged violations, to have had a mea......
  • Hodgson v. CHAIN SERVICE RESTAURANT, L. & SF EMP. U., L. 11, No. 69 Civ. 4675.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • 6 Marzo 1973
    ...Employees Union, Local 6, 391 U.S. 492, 496-499, 88 S.Ct. 1743, 20 L.Ed.2d 763 (1967); Wirtz v. IUOE Locals 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, 366 F.2d 438, 442 (2d Cir. 7 Id. 8 Each proposed labor-management reform bill introduced into the House of Representatives and the Senate prior to the enac......
  • Chao v. Local 54, Hotel Employees and Restaurant, No. 00-3256(JEI).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. District of New Jersey
    • 9 Octubre 2001
    ...outcome, not that the election results were actually affected. See Wirtz v. Local Unions 410, International Union of Operating Engineers, 366 F.2d 438, 443 (2d Cir. The uncontradicted evidence leaves little doubt that Local 54's violations of the LMRDA "may have affected" the resu......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
37 cases
  • Hodgson v. CARPENTERS RESILIENT FLOORING LOCAL U. NO. 2212, No. 19507.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (3rd Circuit)
    • 27 Marzo 1972
    ...denied, 386 U.S. 996, 87 S.Ct. 1316, 18 L.Ed.2d 244 (1967); Wirtz v. Local Unions 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, etc., Operating Engineers, 366 F.2d 438 (2d Cir. 1966); Schultz v. United Steelworkers of America (District 15), 312 F.Supp. 1044 (W.D.Pa.1970); Wirtz v. Local Union No. 1377, I.B.E......
  • McLaughlin v. American Federation of Musicians, No. 88 Civ. 1540 (RJW).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • 23 Noviembre 1988
    ...of a particular election. Id. at 507, 88 S.Ct. at 1752, (quoting from Wirtz v. Local Union 410, Int'l Union of Operating Engineers, 366 F.2d 438, 443 (2d Cir.1966). Defendant asserts that the Secretary has not shown the conceded violation, or any of the alleged violations, to have had a mea......
  • Hodgson v. CHAIN SERVICE RESTAURANT, L. & SF EMP. U., L. 11, No. 69 Civ. 4675.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. United States District Courts. 2nd Circuit. Southern District of New York
    • 6 Marzo 1973
    ...Employees Union, Local 6, 391 U.S. 492, 496-499, 88 S.Ct. 1743, 20 L.Ed.2d 763 (1967); Wirtz v. IUOE Locals 410, 410A, 410B & 410C, 366 F.2d 438, 442 (2d Cir. 7 Id. 8 Each proposed labor-management reform bill introduced into the House of Representatives and the Senate prior to the enac......
  • Chao v. Local 54, Hotel Employees and Restaurant, No. 00-3256(JEI).
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. District of New Jersey
    • 9 Octubre 2001
    ...outcome, not that the election results were actually affected. See Wirtz v. Local Unions 410, International Union of Operating Engineers, 366 F.2d 438, 443 (2d Cir. The uncontradicted evidence leaves little doubt that Local 54's violations of the LMRDA "may have affected" the resu......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT