The opinion of the court was delivered by: Shadur, District Judge.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
Local 705, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs,
Warehousemen & Helpers of America ("Local 705") charges The
Willett Company ("Company"), Willett, Inc. ("Willett"), Willett
Interstate System, Inc. ("Interstate") and Railhead Cartage, Inc.
("Railhead") violated the collective bargaining agreement ("CBA")
between Local 705 and Company by subcontracting cartage work out
to persons not represented by Local 705. Willett, Interstate and
Railhead (collectively "Movants") now seek to be dismissed under
Fed.R.Civ.P. "Rule" 12(b)(1) and 12(b)(6). For the reasons stated
in this memorandum opinion and order, their motion is denied.
Willett is the sole owner of the other defendants. All
defendants are affiliated enterprises with common ownership and
management, centralized control of labor relations and sharing of
equipment, employees and other assets. Company and Local 705 are
signatories to a CBA covering local cartage drivers, under which
cartage work performed by or assigned to Company employees cannot
be subcontracted out or assigned to any other drivers. None of
the Movants is a CBA signatory.
In November 1984 Movants did subcontract out cartage work that
belonged to Company's employees. Some or all that work (the
Complaint is unclear) was contracted out to Railhead, whose stock
Willett had purchased "to circumvent or evade" the CBA.
Local 705 asserts this Court has jurisdiction under Section
301(a) of the Labor Management Relations Act ("LMRA"), 29 U.S.C. § 185(a).
Complaint Count I's prayer for relief:
requests the court to declare defendants a single
employer or joint employer for purposes of this
action and to grant such relief as is appropriate,
1. This Court has no jurisdiction over them under
Section 301 because they are not signatories to the
2. All issues raised by Local 705's Complaint are
within the exclusive jurisdiction of the National
Labor Relations Board ("NLRB" or simply the "Board").
Those contentions will be dealt with in turn.
Section 301 Jurisdiction over Non-Signatories
Suits for violation of contracts between an employer
and a labor organization representing employees in an
industry affecting commerce as defined in this
chapter, or between any such labor organizations, may
be brought in any district court of the United States
having jurisdiction of the parties without respect to
the amount in controversy or without regard to the
citizenship of the parties.
Movants' contention of a lack of Section 301 jurisdiction because
they are not signatories or parties to the CBA really begs the
question. Plainly the gravamen of the Complaint is that Movants
are to be treated as parties to the CBA by virtue of their
identity with Company.
Courts considering whether defendants are a "single employer"*fn2
have regularly exercised jurisdiction over all the defendants to
resolve that issue. Carpenters Local No. 1846 of the United
Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, AFL-CIO v.
Pratt-Farnsworth, Inc., 690 F.2d 489 (5th Cir. 1982), cert.
denied, 461 U.S. 942, 103 S.Ct. 2118, 77 L.Ed.2d 1299 (1983);
Brotherhood of Teamsters, Local No. 70 v. California
Consolidators, Inc., 693 F.2d 81 (9th Cir. 1982) (per curiam),
cert. denied, ___ U.S. ___, 105 S.Ct. 263, 83 L.Ed.2d 199 (1984).
That applies to the alter ego count too. Penntech Papers, Inc. v.
NLRB, 706 F.2d 18, 23-24 (1st Cir. 1983). Movants have failed to
cite even one single employer or alter ego case holding the
Section 301 Jurisdiction over Representational Issues
But scotching that spurious jurisdictional issue shifts
attention to a real one — that stemming from the nature of the
issues raised by the Complaint:
1. Movants claim the relief sought by Local 705
requires a decision as to representational issues
within NLRB's exclusive jurisdiction.
2. Local 705 counters this Court need dispose of
only the narrow single employer issue for the time
being, leaving consideration of the ...