March 11, 2009
LM File No. 541-579
Ms. Ava Ramey, Trustee
Government Security Officers
3925 Emblem Corner
Bowie, MD 20716
Dear Ms. Ramey:
This is in response to your continuing hardship exemption request for the Government Security Officers Local 21, LM File Number 541-579, for an unspecified fiscal year. Your request dated February 19, 2009, was received by the Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) on February 26, 2009.
You based your request upon the following information stated in your letter:
You are making this request as Trustee of Local 21 and stated that the Local is located in Bowie, Maryland, and the international Union is located in Denver, Colorado. Attempts by the Local and International to digitally sign the LM report have resulted in unsuccessful electronic filing.
The instructions for applying for a continuing hardship exemption, as detailed in the Form LM-2 instructions and on the OLMS Web site, state that “a labor organization may apply in writing for a continuing hardship exemption if Form LM-2 cannot be filed electronically without undue burden or expense.” The instructions go on to state:
“The request for the continuing hardship exemption shall include, but not be limited to, the following: (1) the justification for the requested time period of the exemption; (2) the burden and expense that the union would incur if it was required to make an electronic submission; and (3) the reasons for not submitting the report(s) electronically. The applicant must specify a time period not to exceed one year.”
Please note also that to request a continuing hardship exemption, the labor organization must apply in writing, and that written application must be received by OLMS at least thirty days prior to the due date of the report, which appears to be March 31, 2009, for Local 21’s most recent fiscal year (based upon the Local’s previous filing). Additionally, a labor organization may not apply for a hardship exemption for multiple years or an indefinite period. The applicant must specify a time period, but in no case can the time period exceed one year. For additional information regarding hardship exemptions, please refer to the OLMS Web site at: www.dol.gov/esa/olms/regs/compliance/hardship.htm.
Your request for a hardship exemption does not specify a fiscal year for which you are requesting the exemption, does not provide adequate support, nor does it explain any attempts that you have made to contact OLMS to resolve any filing problems. OLMS therefore denies your continuing hardship exemption request on behalf of Government Security Officers Local 21, for filing Form LM-2 electronically, based on the information provided.
For help in digitally signing and submitting your reports, please call the LM Software Support Desk (toll-free) at 1-866-401-1109. If you have additional information that is pertinent to your request, you may provide it for reconsideration no later than March 31, 2009. Any such request may be mailed to the address listed in the Form LM-2 Instructions and on the OLMS Web site, or it may be faxed to 202-693-1340.
If you have any further questions, please call 202-693-0123 and reference your organization’s LM file number.
Andrew R. Davis, Chief
Division of Interpretations
cc: Larry King, Chief, Division of Reports, Disclosure & Audits