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Tapers v. Drywall

United States District Court, S.D. New York

May 8, 2017

DRYWALL TAPERS AND POINTERS OF GREATER NEW YORK LOCAL UNION 1974, IUPAT, AFL-CIO, Petitioner,
v.
XTREME DRYWALL AND ACOUSTICS, Respondent.

          OPINION AND ORDER

          KATHERINE POLK FAILLA United States District Judge

         Petitioner Drywall Tapers and Pointers of Greater New York Local Union 1974, IUPAT, AFL-CIO (the “Union”) has filed a motion for summary judgment to confirm an arbitration award (the “Award”) issued under Section 301 of the Taft-Hartley Labor Management Relations Act (the “LMRA”), 29 U.S.C. § 185. Respondent Xtreme Drywall and Acoustics did not appear in the underlying arbitration (the “Arbitration”). Nor has it appeared in the instant action. And because the undisputed facts of this case establish that the Award must be confirmed, the Court grants Petitioner's motion.

         BACKGROUND[1]

         A. Factual Background

         Petitioner is a labor union under the LMRA that maintains its principal office in New York City, New York. (Pet'r 56.1 ¶ 1; Compl. ¶¶ 5-6). The Union “represents employees in an industry affecting commerce as defined in Section 501 of the [LMRA], ” 29 U.S.C. § 142, “and Section 3(4) of ERISA, ” id. § 1002(4). (Pet'r 56.1 ¶ 1; Compl. ¶ 5). Respondent is “a corporation duly organized and existing under the laws of New York State with its principal office and place of business” in Fishkill, New York. (Pet'r 56.1 ¶ 2; Compl. ¶ 7).

         The case arises from Respondent's alleged breach of two collective-bargaining agreements: the Trade Agreement between the Union, the Drywall Taping Contractors' Association of Greater New York, and the Association of Wall-Ceiling & Carpentry Industry of New York, Inc. (the latter two, collectively, the “Associations”) that was effective from September 6, 2006, to June 28, 2011, and the Trade Agreement between the Union and the Associations that is effective from August 3, 2011, to June 27, 2017. (Dkt. #18-2). The CBAs establish the terms and conditions upon which Union members “shall perform tapers', finishing, and pointers' work” for Association-member employers. (Id.). “Article XXI of the CBA[s] provides that [Respondent] shall pay benefit fund contributions for all work performed by its employees covered by the [CBAs] and to remit such benefits in accordance with the CBA[s].” (Compl. ¶ 10; see also Dkt. #18-2). Contributions made in accordance with this provision are to be paid into trust funds established by “trust agreements” into which the CBAs' signatories entered contemporaneously with the execution of the CBAs. (Dkt. #18-2).

         As relevant here, at Article XIII, Section 1, each CBA outlines a grievance procedure requiring “all complaints other than [e]mployee grievances [to] be presented to a Joint Committee and/or” to the Drywall Taping Industry Board (the “Joint Board”). (Dkt. #18-2). The Joint Board is composed of three members of the Associations, designated by the Associations, and three members of the Union, designated by the Union. (Id.). Section 6 of Article XIV further designates “[t]he decisions and findings of the Joint Board, including any imposition of penalties, ” as “final and binding upon the signatory contractors and the Union, all members of each thereof and all interested parties.” (Id.). And Section 2 of Article XIII dictates that no right of appeal exists with respect to a final decision of the Joint Board. (Id.).

         The dispute giving rise to the instant litigation

arose when [Respondent] failed to remit benefit fund contributions in accordance with the CBA[s] for members Jonathan Restreppo for the weeks of September 1, 2010[;] September 15, 2010[;] September 8, 2010[;] September 22, 2010[;] September 29, 2010[;] October 6, 2010[;] and October 13, 2010; and Allan Sadicario for the weeks of February 17, 2015[;] February 24, 2015[;] March 3, 2015[;] and March 10, 2015.

(Pet'r 56.1 ¶ 4). The Union filed a Demand for Arbitration with the Joint Board and sent Respondent a Notice of Intention to Arbitrate. (Id. at ¶ 5 (citing Compl. ¶¶ 12-13); see also Drew Decl. ¶ 4; Compl., Ex. A).

         On January 19, 2016, the Joint Board held a hearing, at which no one appeared on behalf of Respondent. (Compl., Ex. A). The Joint Board deliberated and

found that [Respondent] breached the [CBAs] by failing to remit benefit contributions on behalf of Union members Jonathan Restreppo for the period September 1, 2010[, ] through October 13, 2010[, ] in the amount of $4, 889.25 and Allen Sadicario for the period February 17, 2015[, ] through March 10, 2015[, ] in the amount of $3, 436.96.

(Drew Decl. ¶ 5; see also Pet'r 56.1 ¶¶ 6-7; Compl., Ex. A). Following the hearing, a written award was rendered and delivered to Respondent. (Pet'r 56.1 ¶¶ 5, 8 (citing Drew Decl. ¶¶ 5-6)). “The Award directs [Respondent] to submit payment for the delinquent contribution amounts that the [Joint Board] determined were owed.” (Drew Decl. ¶ 6 (citing Compl. ¶¶ 15-17 & Ex. A); see also Pet'r 56.1 ¶ 7). Payment was to be made within 72 hours. (Compl., Ex. A). Respondent neither complied with the terms of the Award nor commenced an action seeking to vacate or modify it. (Pet'r 56.1 ¶¶ 9-10 (citing Drew Decl. ¶ 7; Compl. ¶ 18)).

         B. ...


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