Buffalo Local Fined $250,000 for Illegal Strike

The Buffalo Teachers Fed’n was fined $250,000 Dec, 5 for conducting an illegal strike after the sentencing judge said he is convinced the union would strike again if it felt a walkout would benefit its negotiating position.

“At no time has the union ever apologized for its conduct,” said N.Y. State Supreme Court Justice Kevin M. Dillon. Dillon added that the BTF gave no indications that it would refrain from striking again if it felt a job action would work to its benefit. Instead, he said, he is convinced the BTF would walk out again under similar circumstances. After a lengthy explanation, Dillon said his decision to impose a stiff fine was heavily influenced by the lack of apology or pledge to shun strikes.

The Buffalo Bd. of Educ. earlier had asked for a fine of $400,000 or more. The union said that amount would be “unduly harsh and potentially ruinous,” but did not suggest a figure of its own. [Buff. News 12/5/00]