JATC's ATP, including its failure to maintain prescribed standards and its overall failure to achieve its fundamental purpose. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council, 984 F.2d at 592; Grabowski Aff. of 6/4/ 93 P 13. In both instances, the NYSDOL concluded, after investigation, that the evidence was insufficient to support the initiation of deregistration proceedings. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council, 984 F.2d at 592; Grabowski Aff. of 6/4/ 93 P 13.
Defendant intervenor Joint Industry Board of the Electrical Industry ("JIB"), an organization formed to assure the integrity of the electrical industry, is comprised of representatives of labor, management and the public. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council, 984 F.2d at 592. In 1990, JIB filed a complaint with the NYSDOL regarding the operation of the JATC's ATP. Id.; Grabowski Aff. of 6/4/ 93 P 14. The complaint alleged that the JATC's ATP should be deregistered for numerous reasons, including that the apprentices were not provided the required classroom or field training, and that the permitted ratio of journeymen to apprentices was consistently violated. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council, 984 F.2d at 592; Grabowski Aff. of 6/4/ 93 P 14. Based upon the complaint, the NYSDOL conducted an investigation and scheduled a deregistration hearing. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council, 984 F.2d at 592; Grabowski Aff. of 6/4/ 93 P 15.
On February 20, 1992, the JATC, along with other parties to the present action, commenced an action in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. They argued that Article 23 of the New York State Labor Law, § 810 et seq., which governs the registration and supervision of ATPs, was preempted by ERISA. They sought a preliminary injunction to enjoin the scheduled deregistration hearing, but Judge Freeh denied their application. Instead, Judge Freeh granted defendants' motion for summary judgment holding that ERISA did not preempt the deregistration proceedings. The Second Circuit affirmed. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council of Local 363 v. New York State Dep't of Labor, 984 F.2d 589 (2d Cir. 1993).
Thereafter, a number of deregistration hearings were held from late January through late March of 1993. Grabowski Aff. of 6/4/ 93 P 16. On April 20, 1993, after the deregistration hearings were concluded, plaintiffs commenced the present action to enjoin the impending deregistration of the JATC's ATP. In a memorandum opinion and order, dated August 24, 1993, this Court denied plaintiffs' application for a preliminary injunction. Joint Apprenticeship & Training Council of Local 363 v. New York State Department of Labor, 829 F. Supp. 101 (S.D.N.Y. 1993). On July 19, 1993, this Court permitted plaintiffs John Rizzo and Joseph Rizzo, members of the JATC's ATP, to intervene in this action.
According to plaintiffs, deregistration is improper because the NYSDOL's method of establishing standards constitutes an unconstitutional delegation of legislative authority to private parties under the unconstitutional delegation doctrine discussed extensively in General Electric Co. v. New York State Dep't of Labor, 936 F.2d 1448, 1454-59 (2d Cir. 1991). More specifically, plaintiffs allege that the NYSDOL, pursuant to the applicable regulations, would only approve standards which tracked those of the prevailing or largest apprenticeship program in the area.
As in the earlier action, plaintiffs move for a preliminary injunction and defendants cross-move for summary judgment. On a motion for summary judgment, the moving party has the burden of demonstrating the absence of any genuine issue of material fact. See Adickes v. Kress & Co., 398 U.S. 144, 157, 26 L. Ed. 2d 142, 90 S. Ct. 1598 (1970). It is well-established that a fact is material when its resolution would "affect the outcome of the suit under the governing law," and a dispute is genuine "if the evidence is such that a reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving party." Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242, 248, 91 L. Ed. 2d 202, 106 S. Ct. 2505 (1986). On the other hand, a party opposing a motion for summary judgment must "do more than simply show that there is some metaphysical doubt as to the material facts." Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 586, 89 L. Ed. 2d 538, 106 S. Ct. 1348 (1986); see also Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 322, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986). Rather they must enumerate "specific facts and circumstances supported by depositions, affidavits based on personal knowledge, and admissions," and cannot rely upon conclusory allegations or denials. General Electric, 936 F.2d at 1452.
With these standards in mind, this Court will address the principal argument put forth by defendants, i.e. that the instant action is barred by the earlier action under the doctrine of res judicata. Based upon considerations of judicial economy, the doctrine of res judicata was established to avoid superfluous litigation and to inject certainty into the legal system. See Commissioner of Internal Revenue v. Sunnen, 333 U.S. 591, 597, 92 L. Ed. 898, 68 S. Ct. 715 (1948). In the Second Circuit, the traditional formulation of the rule has been explained as follows:
The general rule of res judicata is that a valid, final judgment, rendered on the merits, constitutes an absolute bar to a subsequent action between the same parties, or those in privity with them, upon the same claim or demand. It operates to bind the parties both as to issues actually litigated and determined in the first suit, and as to those grounds or issues which might have been, but were not, actually raised and decided in that action. The first judgment, when final and on the merits, thus puts an end to the whole cause of action.