other means. The absence of a sufficient quantity of copies was ameliorated by Klipa reading the provisions aloud. Votes by inactive members were, by plaintiffs' own theory, more likely to be "No" votes. There is no evidence of record that the room size, sign in procedures or manner of voting affected a single vote, or that they favored potential "Yes" votes.
But the most telling element in this question of injury and causation is in the nature of the July 7, 1985 vote. Plaintiffs claim it was a binding ratification of a tentative agreement, while defendants contend that it was solely advisory and could not bind the Local's negotiators. Plainly this is critical. If the vote was advisory, it left the discretion in the hands of the Local's president who believed this contract was the only way to avert a plant closing.
In this context it is important to note that a binding arbitration vote was not required by the union constitution or by-laws and in the absence of such provisions is not required by law. Confederated Independent Unions v. Rockwell Standard Co., 465 F.2d 1137 (3d Cir. 1972); Goclowski v. Penn Central Transportation Co., 545 F. Supp. 337 (W. D. Pa. 1982), aff'd 707 F.2d 1401 (3d Cir. 1983). Furthermore, no binding ratification vote on a contract had been held by this Local in 30 years.
Plaintiffs argue that even though the vote was not required, President Klipa voluntarily submitted the issue to the membership for a binding vote. In support plaintiffs recite the newspaper article quoting Klipa as saying that the membership was entitled to have some voice in their future.
Klipa's statements are equivocal at best, as consistent with an advisory vote as a binding one. Plaintiffs fail to present any authority to indicate that Klipa had the power to submit to a binding ratification vote. But more importantly, the undisputed fact is that at the time of the July 7, 1985 meeting, there was simply no contract to vote on.
Negotiations had been proceeding between Klipa and the Company's representative when several members requested a special meeting. Union rules required scheduling within ten days and on July 7, 1985, the day of the meeting, the parties had not reached an agreement.
What was presented to membership on July 7, 1985 were two pages of provisions, agreeable to the parties, which would be the basis for a contract. However, as became clear at the meeting, several important issues were unresolved and were to be the subject of further negotiation. Plaintiffs complain that Klipa often responded to questions by saying that he did not have an answer yet because he had not worked out that particular aspect with the company. Rather than being a violation of duties under the LMRA or the LMRDA, this is clear and undisputed evidence that the July 7, 1985 vote was advisory. The membership was not considering a contract, but a fragment representing the course of still ongoing negotiations.
We conclude therefore that plaintiffs are unable to establish that the July 7, 1985 vote would have come out differently in the absence of the alleged violations, or that the subsequent contract would have been any different. Because plaintiffs are unable to establish that the alleged violations were the cause of their alleged injuries, summary judgment is appropriate.
IV. INTERNATIONAL UNION AND U. S. STEEL
Plaintiffs' claims against these defendants derive from the claims against the Local Union Defendants, and all claims against them will therefore be dismissed.
AND NOW in accordance with the accompanying Opinion it is hereby ORDERED that Summary Judgment will be GRANTED in favor of Defendants Klipa and Local 1406 as to all claims. The claims against Defendants Williams, United Steel Workers of America and United States Steel Corporation are hereby DISMISSED.,
The Clerk is DIRECTED to mark this matter CLOSED.
SO ORDERED this 12th day of March, 1987.
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