LIUNA Affirms Tainted Illinois Election

Peter Vaira, the “in-house judge” of the Laborers’ Int’l Union of N. Am., denied a members petition Mar. 20 to overturn the Sept. 2000 election of officers at LIUNA Local 703 in Urbana, Ill.  However, a petition to review the election filed is pending at the Dep’t of Labor. Further, Local 703 secretary-treasurer Randy Perring admitted that DOL had met with the local’s leadership, suggesting that a federal investigation in ongoing.

The election followed a 27-month trusteeship which was imposed by LIUNA for alleged financial malpractices. The election was challenged by four defeated candidates, who claimed current Local 703 business manager Marc Manuel was improperly in the polling area on the day of the election and that the ballots were left unattended at an election site. The protesters complain that their opponents ran as a slate that was designated on the ballot as the “Honest Choice” and that those candidates were listed next to even numbers and the others next to odd numbers. [News-Gaz. (Champaign, Ill.) 3/21/01]