1813 Tague v. UAW Local Union 450

Case No: 1813


Appellant’s primary argument is that he is entitled to additional compensation under Local 450’s Bylaws.  The plain language of the Bylaws does not support this contention.  Appellant’s secondary argument that the Local has made retroactive adjustments in the past is also not persuasive.  As the Appeals Committee found, the Local did not have a consistent practice in this regard.  In any event, even if similar payments were made in the past, the membership remained the highest authority within the Local on this issue with the power to make a final determination, and it did so. 

Although we reject Appellant’s arguments, we also find it necessary to address the International Union’s position in this case regarding the scope of appellate review.  The International asserts that a local’s decision regarding the expenditure of its funds under Article 46, §1 cannot be overruled by the IEB or the PRB, provided that the decision is not contrary to the local’s bylaws or International policy.  The Board does not agree.  Although the Board has liberally construed the scope of the membership’s discretion under Article 46, §1, the PRB has never indicated that this discretion is without limit other than the requirements set forth in local bylaws or International policy.  If the Board were presented with clear and unrefuted evidence that a local had exercised its discretion irrationally or that its decision was the product of discrimination or bad faith, the Board would likely find it necessary to set aside the local’s decision.