The opinion of the court was delivered by: WEINSTEIN
The Regional Director of Region 29 of the N.L.R.B. seeks a temporary injunction against a union pending final disposition of charges that it is engaging in unfair labor practices by means of a secondary boycott. 29 U.S.C. §§ 160(l), 158(b)(4) (i,ii) (B). Involved is an almost classic, if minor, instance of union reaction to a threat to the jobs of its members as a new technique is applied to an old field.
In Nassau County, clearing trees and brush by road-building contractors was accomplished by burning or hauling. Antipollution laws and a shortage of dumps led to the organization last year of the Harder Clearing and Maintenance Co., Inc., to dispose of trees on construction sites by "chipping." Harder's employees fell trees and feed them into a chipper. It cuts the wood into chips and blows them into a large van truck. The chips are hauled away to be sold for mulch or other uses. Harder planned rapid expansion of this service in the building and construction field.
Del Balso Construction Corporation has two substantial construction contracts in Nassau - one to build an expressway extension and the other to erect a railroad overpass over the extension. Tree removal for the overpass was done by Del Balso's employees using the traditional methods of clearing land. For the expressway, Del Balso subcontracted tree clearing to Harder.
Del Balso's drivers are members of Local 282 of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen, and Helpers of America while the subcontractor's drivers are members of Local 1205 of the same international union. It is not disputed that Local 282's working conditions are superior to those of Local 1205.
Work has been going on for the overpass since August of 1966. It began on the expressway extension on June 26, 1967. On June 27, 1967, the day after Harder men began work, John Cody, a vice-president of Local 282, visited Del Balso's office at the construction site, spoke with Gerard Smith, the superintendent on the job, and informed him that the continued employment of Local 1205 workers to do Harder's trucking would result in a work stoppage. Anthony Del Balso, president of Del Balso, testified that upon learning of Cody's visit, he arranged a meeting with Cody for the next day to discuss the problem. At the meeting, Cody stated his position that Harder's use of "substandard" Local 1205 drivers on its trucks violated Del Balso's contract with Local 282.
Mr. Del Balso responded that although he did not want to get in the middle of what he "thought was sort of a -a jurisdictional scrap," (T. 85), he would try to work out an arrangement with Harder to put a Local 282 driver on Harder's truck, or to rent the equipment from Harder and put his own employees on the truck. Either arrangement was acceptable to Cody; if a substandard driver came on the job, however, Cody "told him we would shut down " (T. 148).
The next morning, on June 29, 1967, Charles Daglia, the Local 282 shop steward for Del Balso, ordered Local 282 drivers off Del Balso's job site. Upon being informed of the work stoppage, Local 282's drivers working for Colonial Sand and Gravel Company, Inc., J. D. Posillico, Inc., and Clearview Concrete Pipe Corp. ceased making deliveries of concrete and other supplies to the job site.
When Mr. Del Balso learned of the work stoppage, he spoke to Daglia who, Mr. Del Balso testified, stated "that he had been instructed by Mr. Cody to stop all trucks coming onto our job site if anybody from the Harder Company was working that morning." (T. 90). Cody testified that his instructions to Daglia were "to pull the job if a substandard operator comes on the job." (T. 150). Mr. Del Balso then told Daglia that "since there was no Harder truck on the site at the moment," it "was completely ridiculous" to stop work on the job. (T. 90).
Having received no satisfaction in his discussions with Daglia, Mr. Del Balso reached Cody by telephone, explained to him that the only Harder employees on the job were not truckdrivers and promised to work out an acceptable solution for the dispute. Cody then instructed Daglia to order the men back to work. This was done.
At 12:30 P.M., some two hours after the stoppage began, it was ended. No further difficulties over the tree clearing followed because Del Balso and Harder decided to "terminate their contract in view of the obvious union conflict going on " (T. 95).
Harder filed a charge with the NLRB, alleging that Local 282 had "induced . . . individuals employed by Del Balso . . . to engage in a strike" in order "to force . . . Del Balso . . . to cease doing business with Harder." The NLRB's Regional Director petitioned this Court for a preliminary injunction against Local 282 on the ground that there was reasonable cause to believe that Local 282 had engaged in an illegal secondary boycott. At a hearing before this Court, testimony was presented by the NLRB and Local 282.
Petitioner contends that the threats and work stoppage were designed to compel Del Balso to cease doing business with Harder and to force Colonial Sand & Gravel, Inc., J. D. Posillico, Inc., and Clearview Concrete Pipe Corp. to cease doing business with Del Balso. Strikes or threats with these objects are prohibited by Section 8(b)(4) (i,ii) (B) of the National Labor Relations Act which reads as follows:
Section 8. (b) It shall be an unfair labor practice for a labor organization ...