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CAPITAL v. INTERNATIONAL BHD. OF PAINTERS

December 19, 1983

CAPITAL DISTRICT CHAPTER OF NEW YORK STATE, P.D.C.A., and the Management Trustees of the Capital District Painters Pension Fund, Plaintiffs,
v.
INTERNATIONAL BROTHERHOOD OF PAINTERS AND ALLIED TRADES, LOCAL UNIONS NOS. 201, 12 AND 62 and the Union Trustees of the Capital District Painters Pension Fund, Defendants.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: MINER

MEMORANDUM-DECISION and ORDER

MINER, District Judge.

 I

 This action involves a dispute concerning the arbitrability of a deadlock among the six trustees of a union trust fund as provided for by an agreement and declaration of trust. Jurisdiction is predicated upon § 301(a) of the Labor-Management Relations Act, 29 U.S.C. § 185(a). Before this Court is Capital Districtc's petition for an order compelling arbitration by a court-appointed arbitrator, 9 U.S.C. § 4, *fn1" and staing the arbitration which already has been commenced. *fn2"

 II

 The facts underlying the present controversy essentially are undisputed. Petitioner Capital District Chapter of New York State, P.D.C.A. ("PDCA"), is an employer associated of painting construction contractors and an affiliated chapter of the National Painting and Decorating Contractors of America. Petitioner Management Trustees of the Capital District Painters Pension Fund ("management trustees") are the agents acting on behalf of PDCA in the administration of the Capital District Painters Pension Fund ("trust fund"). Respondent International Brotherhood of Painters and Allied Trades, Local Unions No. 20, 12 and 62 ("union") is a labor organization. Respondent Union Trustees of the Capital District Painters Pension Fund ("union trustees") are the agents acting on behalf of the union in the administration of the trust fund.

 The Trust fund was established in early 1964 as part of a collective bargaining agreement entered into between PDCA and the union for the purpose of providing pensions to eligible employees. As provided for us by an "Agreement and Declaration of Trust" ("trust agreement"), the fund was to be administered by six trustees, three of whom were to be selected by PDCA and three of whom were to be selected by the union. In matters affecting administration of the fund, article V of the trust agreement provides the following:

 A deadlock shall be deemed to exist for purposes of this section whenever (a) a proposal, nomination, motion, or resolution made or seconded by any two Union Trustees is not adopted or defeated by the vote required by Section 5.9, or (b) a quorum is lacking at a duly called meeting and such quorum is not secured at an adjournment of such meeting within fifteen days.

 Whenever a deadlock as hereinabove defined occurs, any two Trustees may give written notice to the remaining Trustees declaring that a deadlock exists and calling a meeting of the Trustees to agree upon an impartial umpire to break such a deadlock by deciding the dispute in question. Such notice shall specify the dispute in question causing such deadlock, and copies of such notice shall likewise be sent to the Union and the Association Employers. If the Trustees fail to select such impartial umpire within five days after such aciton [notice?] is given, then any two or more of the Trustees may file a petition with the U.S. District Court in Albany, New York, requesting such Court to appoint an impartial umpire to decide the dispute in question which caused such deadlock. . . .

 Trust agreement, art. V, § 5.10.

 At a trustees' meeting held on September 20, 1982, a union trustee proposed that the fund's office be moved from its location in Clifton Park, New York to the Albany Labor Temple at Third Street in Albany. That motion was deadlocked. While it is not clear whether the notice required under § 5.10 ever was given, the respective trustees nonetheless agreed to submit the deadlock to arbitration. *fn3" In accordance with the rules of the American Arbitration Association, Professor John E. Sands was selected to be the arbitrator and the arbitration hearing was scheduled for March 8, 1983. On the evening of March 7, 1983, the night before the scheduled arbitration, another meeting of the trustees was held. At that meeting, one of the management trustees introduced a motion for the purpose of identifying the issues to be determined by Professor Sands. Specifically, the motion sought to include, as part of the subject matter of the upcoming arbitration, "whether we continue or discontinue the agreement of 1966 whereby the Management Trustees select the administration *fn4" and location of the Fund and the office and the Union Trustees arrange for the attorney to handle the legal matters." (Answer to petition, P20). This motion, too, resulted in a deadlock and it appears that no notice, as required by § 5.10, ever was served.

 The arbitration hearing commenced as scheduled the next day before Professor Sands. At the hearing, petitioners attempted to submit to Porfessor Sands "all controversies existing at the time of the arbitration hearing, including . . . [w]hether an agreement among the Trustees made in 1964 *fn5" allowing for selection of the Fund Administrator and the location of the Fund Office by the Employer-Trustees and the selection of the attorney for the Trustees by the Union-Trustees was made and whether there is sufficient reason to abrogate continuation of the agreement or arrangement." (Amended complaint, P14). Professor Sands, however, refused to determine any question other than whether the fund's office should be moved, reasoning that this deadlock issue was the only issue properly before him. Specifically, in his written Opinion and Award, arbitrator Sands noted the following:

 At the first day's hearing I determined that my arbitral jurisdiction extended to the following issue and no other:

 What shall be the resolution of the deadlock created by the three-three vote on the motion . . . to move the Fund ...


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