Two seats open on Oregon AFL-CIO E-Board; new L-M committee staffed
SALEM, OR -- There are two openings on the Executive Board of the Oregon AFL-CIO following the resignations of Bert Larson of Bend and Wally Mehrens of Portland.
Larson, District 11, was recently promoted to a job as an international representative of the Woodworkers Division of the Machinists and has been assigned to Idaho.
Mehrens, District 1, executive secretary-treasurer of the Columbia-Pacific Building Trades Council and a member of Bricklayers Local 1, resigned at the Dec. 19 meeting citing differences with the state labor federation's leadership.
Candidates for the open board seats must live or work in either District 11 (Crook, Deschutes and Wheeler counties) or District 1 (Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties), and be a member in good standing of a local union affiliated with the central labor council in that district and the Oregon AFL-CIO.
In regular business, the state labor federation's Executive Board approved making an early endorsement in the race for Oregon labor commissioner. Democratic State Representative Mike Fahey, executive secretary-treasurer of the Portland Metal Trades Council, is running for the job now held by Jack Roberts.
The AFL-CIO will notify central labor councils so that they can arrange to hold Committee on Political Education meetings to make their recommendations.
Roberts has not announced whether or not he will run for re-election and no one else has filed, although Democratic State Senator Bill Dwyer of Eugene is expressing interest in the non-partisan race. The filing deadline is March 10.
Tim Nesbitt, executive director of the Oregon State Council of Service Employees, reported that five initiative petitions dealing with "corporate income tax equalization" have been filed and approved by the state. He said all five are under appeal by Associated Oregon Industries, which opposes them.
The Oregon AFL-CIO contributed $2,000 to the Tax Fairness Political Action Committee, which is being formed to build support for the corporate income tax initiatives.
The Oregon AFL-CIO also is supporting a vote-by-mail initiative sponsored by Secretary of State Phil Keisling.
Alice Dale, executive director of the Oregon Public Employees Union, announced that in a mail ballot her members voted to assess themselves $5 a month for 12 months to a political fund for ballot measures. The assessment should raise about $1.3 million, Dale said.
Frank Jackson of Eugene reported that the Federation of Employed Attorneys & Related Professionals (FEAR) is preparing to open an office in Eugene in order to begin organizing law associates, legal secretaries and staff of attorneys in private practice. FEAR is affiliated with Operating Engineers Local 3 of San Francisco, said Jackson, a retired Fire Fighters and current secretary-treasurer of the Lane County Labor Council.
The Executive Board placed Plympton & Associates on the statewide Unfair List. The Machinists alleged that Plympton, a former business manager of Boilermakers Local 72, is raiding their bargaining unit at Johnson Controls in Canby.
The Oregon AFL-CIO has contracted with Lee Shore and the Center for Working Life in Portland to coordinate a new labor-management committee using a $100,000 grant from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. Kim Geddes was hired by the state labor federation to work part-time as the committee's secretary and bookkeeper.
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