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Office of Labor-Management Standards
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Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS)

U.S. Department of Labor
Employment Standards Administration
Office of Labor-Management Standards
San Francisco District Office
90 7th Street
Suite 18-100
San Francisco, CA  94103
(415) 625-2661  Fax:(415) 625-2662

January 16, 2009                  

Ms. Linda Dabbs, President
Utility Workers AFL-CIO Local 160C
497 Purisima Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
                                                                                                              LM File Number:  040-320
                                                                                                        Case Number:  ||||||||||
Dear Ms. Dabbs:

This office has recently completed an audit of Utility Workers AFL-CIO Local 160C under the Compliance Audit Program (CAP) to determine your organization’s compliance with the provisions of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA).  As discussed during the exit interview with you on January 13, 2009, the following problems were disclosed during the CAP.  The matters listed below are not an exhaustive list of all possible problem areas since the audit conducted was limited in scope.

Recordkeeping Violations

Title II of the LMRDA establishes certain reporting and recordkeeping requirements.  Section 206 requires, among other things, that labor organizations maintain adequate records for at least five years by which each receipt and disbursement of funds, as well as all account balances, can be verified, explained, and clarified.  As a general rule, labor organizations must maintain all records used or received in the course of union business. 

For disbursements, this includes not only original bills, invoices, receipts, vouchers, and applicable resolutions, but also documentation showing the nature of the union business requiring the disbursement, the goods or services received, and the identity of the recipient(s) of the goods or services.  In most instances, this documentation requirement can be satisfied with a sufficiently descriptive expense receipt or invoice.  If an expense receipt is not sufficiently descriptive, a union officer or employee should write a note on it providing the additional information.  For money it receives, the labor organization must keep at least one record showing the date, amount, purpose, and source of that money.   The labor organization must also retain bank records for all accounts.

The audit of Local 160C’s 2007 records revealed the following recordkeeping violations:

1.         Retention of Union Records

Local 160C did not retain all records used or received in the course of union business for the last five years. The union has retained records for only the last three years.  

2.         Lack of Salary Authorization

Local 160C did not maintain records to verify that the salaries reported in Item 24 (All Officer and Disbursements to Officers) of the LM-3 were the authorized amounts and therefore were correctly reported.  The union must keep a record, such as meeting minutes, to show the current salary authorized by the entity or individual in the union with the authority to establish salaries.

Based on your assurance that Local 160C will retain adequate documentation in the future, OLMS will take no further enforcement action at this time regarding the above violation.

Reporting Violations

1.         Certificates of Deposit Reported as Investments

Local 160C improperly included the value of certificate of deposit as an investment in Statement A (Assets and Liabilities).  For LM reporting purposes, OLMS considers a certificate of deposit to be cash.  The purchase or redemption of a certificate of deposit is a transfer of cash from one account to another and, therefore, the local should not report these transactions as receipts or disbursements.

2.         Cash Reconciliation

It appears that the cash figures reported in Item 25 are not the cash figures according to the union’s books after reconciliation to the bank statements.  The instructions for Item 25 state that the union should obtain account balances from its books as reconciled to the balances shown on bank statements. 

3.         Failure to File Bylaws

The audit disclosed a violation of LMRDA Section 201(a), which requires that a union submit a copy of its revised constitution and bylaws with its LM report when it makes changes to its constitution or bylaws.  Local 160C amended its constitution and bylaws in 1999, but did not file a copy with its LM report for that year.  Local 160C has now filed a copy of its constitution and bylaws.

I am not requiring that Local 160C file an amended LM-3 report for 2007 to correct the deficient items, but Local 160C has agreed to properly report the deficient items on all future reports it files with OLMS.

I want to extend my personal appreciation to Utility Workers AFL-CIO Local 160C for the cooperation and courtesy extended during this compliance audit.  I strongly recommend that you make sure this letter and the compliance assistance materials provided to you are passed on to future officers.  If we can provide any additional assistance, please do not hesitate to call.

Sincerely,

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Investigator

cc:  Mickey Lovell, Treasurer