Even though their dues paying union members were struggling to make ends meet, the union bosses continued to take home large salaries.
According to a January, 2010 news report in the Boston Globe, “Blue-collar workers bear brunt of decline - Ratio of job losses at depression level,” there were 65 unemployed construction workers for every 1 job opening.
If you are a member of the Laborers' union and you have been laid off for an extended period of time or have been chronically underemployed, you might be interested to know how much your union bosses are making.
Bosses of the Laborers’ union were the biggest beneficiary of membership dues between 2007 and 2009, raking in a 194% increase in pay during that time period.
Of those exorbitant pay increases, the main beneficiaries were Laborers’ boss Paul McNally, whose take from the union jumped from $228,000 in 2007 to $477,000 in 2009; Martin Walsh who went from taking a modest $2,000 in 2007 to $306,600 in 2009 and Bradley Castello, who saw his income jump from $1,800 in ’07 to $233,349 in ’09.
There is no explanation from the union in their federally mandated financial disclosures (LM-2) for the reason for the huge jump in salaries at the Laborers’ union. However, the union lists their pay increases under “Section G - Other Disbursements...” of their disclosure.
According to the 2009 report, all the increases were listed as:
“Other Disbursements not reported in Gross Salary Disbursements (before any deductions), Allowances Disbursed and Disbursements for Official Business,” which includes “all other direct and indirect disbursements to each officer for which cash, property, goods, services, or other things of value were received by or on behalf of each officer and were essentially for the personal benefit of the officer and not necessary for conducting official business of the labor organization." (emphasis added)
Regardless of the rationale used to justify theses payouts, the fact is many union members are unemployed or underemployed, faced with mounting bills and even home foreclosures, while union bosses receive six-figure disbursements.
IBEW Local 103
In 2009, IBEW Local 103 reported employing 54 people on its payroll, with a total payroll of almost $2.9 million. Of that total, just 12 IBEW Local 103 officials made up 67 percent of the payroll, or $1.8 million.
New England Council of Carpenters
Similarly the New England Council of Carpenters employs more than 100 people with a payroll in 2009 of more than $8.8 million.