members) off the rest of the building project. This would be catastrophic to the project, since the electrical subcontractor, Harry F. Ortlip, which employs members of Local 98, is by far the largest and most important to this very large project, which is promised to be ready for at least partial occupancy by PNC personnel in mid-July. If Local 98's threat is carried out, other trades would not be able to continue working on the site and deadlines to Driscoll would be missed. Ms. Margaret A. Cowan, Driscoll's senior project manager, thus credibly testified at the hearing today that, "I could not afford to stop the electrical work in order to commission the project on time." See also Testimony of Thomas J. Tobin, III, Driscoll's assistant project manager (credibly testifying that it would be "devastating" if Ortlip's electricians walked off the site).
Mr. Tobin, on behalf of Driscoll, consequently told Reliable that it would not be permitted to do the sub-contracted work until it resolved its labor problems. Since March 24, Reliable has not performed the work which it was contracted to do at the site.
On March 26, 1997, Reliable filed a complaint before the NLRB charging unfair labor practices -- cases nos. 4-CC-2149 (the "CC" charge") and 4-CD-953 (the "CD" charge"). The Regional Office of the Board has found merit to these charges. Id. With regard to the CD charge, it is reported that the "Acting Regional Director issued a Notice of Hearing on April 17, 1997 . . . ." for May 13. Id. As to the CC charge, "the Region will issue Complaint . . . shortly, and establish a separate hearing." Id.
On April 22, 1997, Judge Padova, as Emergency Judge, signed an ex parte Order to Show Cause, setting an injunction hearing for this day. After hearing the testimony of three witnesses, we have concluded that the Board is entitled to its injunction.
II. Legal Analysis
A. Relief Sought: Injunction Pursuant to § 10(l)
The Board seeks, pursuant to § 10(l) of the Act, a temporary injunction against Local 98 pending the Board's final disposition, pursuant to § 10(k) of the Act, of the charges Reliable has filed against Local 98.
The NLRB's authority to seek injunctive relief in federal court is explicitly provided in § 10(l) of the Act, which requires an NLRB officer or regional attorney with "reasonable cause" to believe that a charge of unfair labor practice is true to seek injunctive relief pending final adjudication by the Labor Board of the charge alleged. Section 10(l) also states that a district court that receives such a petition may grant such injunctive relief as it deems "just and proper."
Our Court of Appeals has set forth the requirements for obtaining injunctive relief under § 10(l) in Hoeber for and on behalf of the NLRB v. Local 30, 939 F.2d 118 (3d Cir. 1991). In Hoeber, the Court stated that in determining whether "reasonable cause" is present, the district court must make two inquiries.
First, it must be shown that the Labor Board has "a substantial legal theory explicit or implicit in the case that would support a finding that an unfair labor practice had occurred." Id. at 123. This merely requires a showing that the NLRB's legal theory is "substantial and nonfrivolous." Id. at 124; see Hirsch v. Building & Constr. Trades Council, 530 F.2d 298, 302 (3d Cir. 1976) ("The Regional Director faces a relatively insubstantial burden of proof when he petitions a district court for temporary injunctive relief pursuant to § 10(l)."). Second, if a substantial legal theory is found, the district court must determine whether the facts satisfy the theory. See id.
Our task here is quite limited. It is emphatically not to reach a final adjudication of this "jurisdictional dispute." Pursuant to § 10(k) of the Act, the NLRB will determine to whom the sub-contracted work belongs to and will award the work accordingly. See NLRB v. Radio Broadcast, 364 U.S. 573, 576, 5 L. Ed. 2d 302, 81 S. Ct. 330 (1961).
The final step in our analysis is ascertaining whether an injunction would further the Congressional policy behind the enactment of § 10(l), which is "the prompt elimination of the obstructions to the free flow of commerce and encouragement of the practice and procedure of free and private collective bargaining." Hoeber, 939 F.2d at 126; id. (section 10(l) is "designed to prevent disruptions which threaten a danger of harm to the public"); see also Wilson v. Milk Drivers & Dairy Employees Union, 491 F.2d 200, 203 (8th Cir. 1974) ("Section 10(l) reflects a Congressional determination that the unfair labor practices enumerated therein [see infra II.B.] are so disruptive of labor-management relations and threaten such danger of harm to the public that they should be enjoined whenever a district court has been shown reasonable cause to believe in their existence and finds that the threatened harm or disruption can best be avoided through an injunction.").
B. Reliable Has Filed Two Unfair Labor Practice Charges Against Local 98
1. Section 8(b)(4)(ii)(D) of the Act
Reliance has charged that Local 98 has violated subparagraph (D) of § 8(b)(4)(ii) of the Act, which provides that:
(b) It shall be an unfair labor practice for a labor organization or its agents to --
(4) (ii) to threaten, coerce, or restrain any person engaged in commerce or in an industry affecting commerce, where . . . an object thereof is --