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Latest News - January 2012

January 24, 2012
Cab company to appeal labor board order
By: Tim O’Reiley

Lucky Cab Co. said it will appeal a National Labor Relations Board judge's order that it hold a new union election after improper conduct tainted one last year.

On Dec. 28, administrative law judge Lana Parke ruled that the company had interfered with a May 6 election pushed by the Industrial, Technical and Professional Employees Union Local 4873. Specifically, she decided that the company had fired six drivers for their union organizing activities, providing the grounds for the judge to overturn the union loss.

The final tally showed 105 employees voting against the union versus 93 in favor.

However, the judge rejected four other union complaints that the company violated federal rules by interfering with the voting process.

Lucky Cab owner Jason Awad called the part of the ruling concerning the drivers "absolutely frivolous," adding that each was terminated for unrelated reasons that, in some instances, preceded the union organizing campaign. One driver, for example, was caught lying about driving on the Strip, a violation of state regulations that limited the driver to other parts of Las Vegas due to the type of permit in the cab at the time, he said. The appeal notes that the driver denied being on the Strip, although GPS tracking of the car showed otherwise.

Union representatives took the ruling as a vindication of their efforts to show that Lucky had improperly stacked the election against them. Steward Sam Moffitt said the union tried to reach a settlement with Awad, "but the terms he offered were absurd. I took it as an insult."

He did not discuss specifics.

Under the agency's process, the ruling would have become final in the absence of objections at the end of Wednesday. But if Lucky goes ahead as promised, the case will follow an appeals process that could take weeks or months.

Besides a new election, which would be the third at Lucky since 2009, Parke ordered the company reinstate the drivers with back pay.

Other complaints by the union, including threatening the loss of benefits if the union own and trying to sway votes during the polling, were tossed out by Parke as not falling in the required time frame or being too minor to change the outcome.



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