How do you extend a contract that was never finished? & What about the PGP?

Does anyone remember the ILWU PMA MOU 3-4-15?

Why isn’t it on PMA’s website?

Where are the Contract books? It has been over 2-years since the 2014-2019 MOU was ratified!

Every longshoreman knows, you can’t start a new job until you finish the one you are on.

What’s up Big Baby, why are you chiseling?

On Friday, April 28, 2017, the ILWU announced the results of their top secret caucus, and surprise, surprise, the caucus is recommending Big Baby’s 3-year contract extension proposal.

Using his trademark, do everything in secret so as not to have to deal with any objections or questions from anyone outside the room, Big Baby McEllrath was able to pull his grain contract, “This is as good as it gets,” oka doke to bluff and deceive his caucus into agreeing with his extension proposal.

Here is what the oka doke looks like on the ILWU closed Facebook group.

Check out the post from Local 13 Caucus Delegate, Sunshine Garcia.

Sunshine puts in for pay for every “volunteer” job she does “for the Union.” Now she is whining about how hard it is to travel the world in Business Select Class, stay in 4-star hotels and eat at 5-star restaurants, but says not one word about what she was there to do, or what she did, or why the 3-year extension is a good deal. Is it all secret?

What about the PGP?

The reason there are no Contract books today is, Big Baby and Jim McKenna cannot agree on what they agreed to regarding the Pay Guarantee Plan, or PGP.

The Pay Guarantee Plan was Harry’s genius way of allowing the employers to introduce labor saving devices, like forklifts and cranes, while guaranteeing ILWU members “their piece of the pie.”

I do not know what the exact problem is with the PGP, but if it is big enough to prevent the Contract books from being printed for over 2-years, it is probably worth taking about in 2019.

With the robots and computers eliminating jobs by the hundreds, seems to me that the ILWU should be very interested in what is happening with the PGP.

It does not matter how much an hour you make if you are NOT working, but it DOES matter how much PGP you are getting if you are NOT working!

According to the 2008 -2014 PCLCD the Pay Guarantee Plan reads as follows:

Section 20.2 Benefits. Effective with the beginning of the third payroll quarter of 1987, PGP benefits for Class A employees shall be a maximum of 38 hours pay each week; PGP benefits for Class B employees who have 5 or more vacation qualifying years as of the preceding April 1 shall be a maximum of 38 hours pay each week; PGP benefits for Class B employees with less than 5 vacation qualifying years as of the preceding April 1 shall be a maximum of 28 hours pay each week. The hourly rate of PGP pay shall be the employee’s appropriate straight time rate of pay as provided under Section 4.13. (PGP will reflect any increases in the basic longshore rates, Memorandum of Understanding dated November 23, 2003)

According to the 2014-2019 MOU the Pay Guarantee Plan reads as follows:

Section 20.2 Benefits. Effective with the ratification of the contract, PGP benefits for Class A employees shall be a maximum of 40 hours pay each week; PGP benefits for Class B employees who have 5 or more vacation qualifying years as of the preceding April 1 shall be a maximum of 40 hours pay each week; PGP benefits for Class B employees with less than 5 vacation qualifying years as of the preceding April 1 shall be a maximum of 32 hours pay each week. The hourly rate of PGP pay shall be the employee’s appropriate straight time rate of pay as provided under Section 4.13.

Seems like a good deal to me, but why are the Contract books not printed?

This is just one of the reasons that Big Baby kept a super tight lid on what was happening at the Caucus. WHY?

Lets look at the raises proposed for the next 3-years.

The average raise in the 2014-2019 MOU was $1.30 per year.

The proposed raise for the next 3-years is $1.31 in 2019, $1.35 in 2020, and $1.39 in 2021.

That is 1 cent above average in the 1st year, 5 cents above average in the 2nd year, and 9 cents above average in the 3rd year.

That is 15 cents above average over 3 years.

The cranes are getting taller, the ships age getting bigger, the bridge is getting raised, every one is making lots of money, and Big Baby is agreeable to settling for 15 cents over the average increase for the next 3-years, because he gets his retirement and another Contract under his belt.

The history of the ILWU/PMA negotiations suggests that the Union will get at least a 3.1% increase in wages if they bargain in 2019, but it is not about the money. It is about jurisdiction and benefits. The Benefits Plan is still messed up due to the Port Medical fraud, and Big Baby and the Coast are trying to protect the members responsible for the fraud.

Does anyone think the Union can get more than 15 cents over the next 3-years, if they bargain in 2019?

I do, and I know I am not alone.

Harry’s Local, the Mother Local, Local 10 agrees, which is why their membership said no way to extending the Contract.

They get it.

Let the snow ball start to roll……



ILWU has been interfering with workers rights by requiring the PCLCD grievance procedures be exhausted before going to the “outside.”

In a surprise move by Region 19, the NLRB has decided that Section 17.15, which requires the grievance procedures of the agreement be exhausted before utilizing “other remedies,” is unlawful and in violation of the ACT.

Region 19 found merit to the original charge against Rich Austin and Local 19 and asked if I would be agreeable to amending it to include the International. They also asked if I would be agreeable to filing an additional charge against PMA, as they would be needed in order to make the needed changes to the PCLCD. I said yes, and here they are;


Or for those who prefer PDF; NLRB 19-CB-190139 amended 3-29-17 and NLRB 19-CA-195788 3-29-17.

For the last 36 years I have watched the Union deny workers their right to go to the NLRB, by requiring them to exhaust the PCLCD grievance machinery before going to the “outside.”

The grievance process is designed to take 6 months on every complaint filed by workers, so that when they get denied and go to the NLRB they will be time barred by Section 10 (b) of the Act.

The Union knows that Section 10 (b) of the Act is strictly enforced, which is exactly why they take at least 6 months to process any grievances against the Union.

The “unfair” language of PCLCD Section 17.15 is nothing compared to the fraud and interference going on with the PCLCD Section 13 discrimination procedures.

If you have been denied access to PCLCD Section 13, either 13.2 or 13.3, and you want to do something about it please contact me at [email protected], or the Jennifer Duffy at [email protected] at the law firm below.

Law Offices of Jennifer Duffy

28649 S. Western Avenue  Suite 6571

Los Angles, CA  90734


It is time for a Class Action.

The current leadership of the ILWU seems to have forgotten that; An injury to one is an injury to all.

It only takes 3 workers to form a Class.

Are there 3 workers out there interested in stepping up?

We will see.

More to come…..


If the ILWU gives up the right to negotiate in 2019, they will not have anything to negotiate for in 2022.

With increased use of robots on the docks, there will be fewer longshoremen needed.

With increased use of transponders and electronic information platforms, there will be zero clerks needed.

If the ILWU gives the Employers another 5 years before they go back to the bargaining table, when they get there there will be nothing left for them to bargain for, and no need for registering any more longshoremen because casuals will do and they have no benefits.

Bobby O Jr. is running up and down the Coast telling Locals that the robots have eliminated hundreds of jobs in LA/LB.

Bobby O Jr. has negotiated 2 robot Agreements that eliminated around 140 jobs per ship visit, and he refuses to provide his membership copies of the Agreements that they ratified.

Friday afternoon, PMA finally sent a written proposal to the Union and it includes some money, along with the pension increase.

Will the ILWU sell out their future for a few cents and some retirement money?

How is Big Baby going to sell this to his members?

If the ILWU agrees to extend the Contract, it will be the beginning of the end of a great Union.

I know what Harry would say.

Harry would say; “Homey Don’t Play That.”



PMA is so serious about extending the Contract, that they do not even have a written proposal.

It seems like PMA’s interest for negotiating a 3 year extension poofed away when “The Donald” won the election.

The lack of interest is reflected in their 1 item, unwritten,”take it or leave it,” offer to raise the retirement pay to $225 for each good year in 2022.

That’s it, no wages, keep everything else as is, including the medical benefits plan, and increase the retirement to $225 by 2022.

Does Big Baby Bob think that he can convince his greedy membership that they will not be able to get anything at the bargaining table in 2019?

Does Big Baby think that one of his temper tantrums including storming off the stage, to go sit in the back and pout, will somehow persuade his members to give him his big fat retirement gift?

Beating up on individuals like David Miller and Eric Aldape may scare his members, but it does not faze the Employers.

Big Baby is losing it and his rants, like the one he threw yesterday at the CLRC meeting, are not going to work.

Try and bluff and deceive your way out of this Big Baby.

It ain’t going to work because, Homey Don’t Play That!

More to come…



Why is Big Bob so afraid of David Miller? Or should I ask; What is Big Baby Bob so scared of?

Big Baby Bob has backed off his position that all Arbitrators are barred from testifying in grievance hearings.

At the CLRC meeting today at PMA, Big Baby plans to present his new proposal that only former Arbitrators be barred from participation as witnesses.

How about only barring those Arbitrators that Big Baby fired?

All this weird behavior by Big Baby makes me wonder, what is it exactly that David Miller has on Big Baby?

Could it be that “Judge Roy Bean” Miller knows where all Big Baby Bob’s skeletons are buried?

Or, is this a power play to show the Caucus that Big Baby is large and in charge?

Next week Big Baby will be trying to “sell” PMA’s proposal to extend the contract.

Big Baby will be trying to sell an extension that only gives money to the retirees, and he will be doing his “thing” in order to force his members to do what he wants.

Does anyone else find it interesting that the only beneficiaries of the extension will be the retirees, and Big Baby will be retiring with the maximum 37 years right after the extension is ratified?

Come on Big Baby, do you really think you can bluff and deceive your membership into buying your retirement package?

More to come….



The ILWU/PMA Arbitration procedures are corrupt and dominated by International President “Big Bob” McEllrath.

The following letter sent to PMA by the ILWU Coast Committee on Friday, April 13, 2017, shows just how corrupt.

Or for this who prefer PDF; ILWU letter re-Use of Former Arbitrators in Grievance Machinery

Big Bob got wind that David Miller, the Arbitrator he fired during the 2014 Contract negotiations, was going to be called as a witness in 2 Arbitration hearings and he went nuts.

For along time, I have had the feeling that Big Bob has been interfering in the Section 13 Arbitration process, especially since he hired ILWU Attorney for the last 30 years, Larry Schwerin, as the Coast Appeals Officer. The April 13th letter that he and his Coast Committee sent to PMA, including the PMA Sub-Steering Committee, provides proof.

Big Bob’s letter is almost entirely composed of fabricated nonsense and outright lies.

Last week, PMA brought in former Southern California Area Arbitrator, David Miller, as an expert witness. About 40 minutes into the hearing Local 34 called for a caucus, then after about 30 minutes came back into the hearing, with 2 goons, and told David he had to go, that he was trespassing, and 911 would be called if he did not leave immediately.

Big Bob’s April 13th letter makes it clear that he is the one objecting to David Miller’s participation, not Local 34.

Big Bob is attempting to bully his way into getting David removed as a witness, the same way he got David fired in 2014, using his bully boy intimidation tactics and flat out lies. Bob and the Coast Committee are outright witness tampering.

The only true statement in Big Bob’s April 13th letter is that; “Mr. Miller served for many years as an area arbitrator for Southern California.”

It is NOT “inherently improper and unfair for one party to use a former arbitrator in this manner,” and “Use of a former arbitrator in this manner undermines the integrity of the arbitration system as well as the integrity of the arbitrators,” is a bold faced lie and unsupported by any documentation.

There are no CLRC minutes, or any JCLRC Clarifications, that say former Arbitrators cannot participate in Arbitrations, and the JCLRC Clarifications on Arbitration Procedures state; “The Committee recognizes that the parties, both local and coast, have not and do not wish to be bound by rigid formal Arbitration procedures.”

In fact, according to Arbitration Award SCAA-0032-2009, the Local 13 used Coast Appeals Officer/Arbitrator Rudy Rubio as a witness and Big Bob had no problem. Could that be because Rudy was going to say exactly what Big Bob wanted him to say?

Here is the entire Award in PDF format; SCAA-0032-2009

According to the Bible of Arbitration, How Arbitration Works by Elkouri and Elkouri, there is nothing what-so-ever wrong with using a former Arbitrator as an Expert Witness.

According to How Arbitration Works; “The “expert” is allowed to draw inferences and conclusions because, in theory, his knowledge is superior to that of the person having to resolve the issue, be it judge, jury, or arbitrator,” and “In addition to the admission of opinion evidence by expert witnesses (generally admitted by courts of law), it is suggested that arbitrators may in their discretion admit any opinion testimony from knowledgeable persons if such testimony might be helpful.”

“Arbitrators should be informed as fully as possible about the disputes they are to resolve. Accordingly, the arbitrator must feel free to participate personally in the hearing by asking questions, seeking information, and exploring all angles to the extent reasonably necessary to satisfy himself that he has in fact been informed as fully as possible.” 

Big Bob’s interference in the process by telling the Arbitrators that they cannot hear from witnesses, unless he says so, is illegal and unethical and someone needs to tell him so.

Big Bob’s argument that Arbitrators can be “bought” by a party to endorse and promote its arbitration positions is not just speculation. Bob “bought” 30 year Union Attorney, Larry Schwerin, as Coast Appeals Officer.

According to the following Letter of Understanding dated July 1, 2014, the Parties agreed to appoint an “individual from outside the industry to serve as the Coast Appeals Officer under the Section 13.2 procedures.”

Larry Schwerin is NOT from outside the industry. Larry Schwerin’s law firm has and still does represent ILWU Locals 19 and 23.

Larry Schwerin does exactly what Big Bob tells him to do, because he has made millions of dollars from the ILWU and he does not want to lose his cash cow.

Contrary to Big Bob’s false claim, David Miller did NOT sue the ILWU to undo the current arbitration system, he sued for defamation and back pay. Read the David Miller – Lawsuit Statement of Facts for yourself.

Bold faced lies and whining and crying are Big Bob’s standard negotiation tactics, and that is exactly what he is doing with his letter to PMA.

David Miller’s presence as an expert witness was in no way a provocation or an intended offense against the Union, and sends no message that the Employers can; “unfairly manipulate the arbitration system by hiring a former arbitrator as a ‘ringer,'” that is just Big Bob whining and crying.

Big Bob’s letter proves that he is interfering in the Section 13 Arbitration system as well.

Bob claims it “came to our attention” that; “one of the parties” had cited David Miller as a witness in a Section 13.2 hearing (SPSC-0006-2017).

How did it “come to our attention?” Was it a result of the Special LRC called by Local 13 to complain about David Miller being listed as a witness?

What does Big Bob mean when he says; “We understand that Mr. Miller is not a percipient witness and instead is being called to testify with respect to his prior role as an area arbitrator under the PCL&CA?”

How could Big Bob possibly understand what a witness is going to testify to if he never talked to either the witness or the charged party’s representative?

The parties DO NOT have an established policy against allowing testimony by a PCL&CA arbitrator in any proceeding. If they did, then how did Rudy Rubio testify in SCAA-0032-2009?

Big Bob is NOT a lawyer, and “the coast” has not and does not wish to be bound by rigid formal Arbitration procedures, so why is he misquoting the law? More deception and bluff?

This is NOT a law suit and nothing bars David Miller from being called as a witness, in any grievance hearing, period.

Someone needs to tell Big Bob that he is not the biggest kid in the sandbox and whining and crying and lying, will NOT get him his way.

Oh, and thanks for the letter Big Bob, I will be using it with my NLRB charges regarding Section 13 and a longshoreman doing time off over a political cartoon.

More to come…