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injunction of the executive committee. Censure is visited more or less sparingly, but fines are levied with regard to the gravity of the case in hand.
The original conception of the plan was to provide equal representation from employers and unions to the General Arbitration Board, thereby securing a panel from which arbitrators could be selected for any particular dispute. But this method has been superseded by an executive committee, chosen jointly, which has really become a joint arbitration board for the building industry, chiefly for the purpose of settling disputes without recourse to an arbitrator or umpire outside of the industry.
PARTIES TO THE AGREEMENT.
The parties to the plan of arbitration on the part of the employers were the 31 employers' associations which comprise the Building Trades Employers' Association of Greater New York. These 31 associations of employers represent a membership of more than 1,000 firms, corporations, or establishments doing business in the building industry. An estimate of the magnitude of the undertakings of these master builders can be gleaned from the fact that they have to do with the building, erecting, and equiping of approximately 13,000 building operations each year, the annual expenditure for which is estimated to be approximately $200,000,000.
Employers' associations represented in the plan of arbitration are as follows:
Employers' Association of Architectural Iron Workers.
Bluestone Dealers' Association.
Master Carpenters' Association.
Master League of Cement Workers.
Composition Roofers and Waterproofers Employers' Association.
Electrical Contractors' Association.
Elevator Manufacturers' Association.
New York League of Heat and Cold Insulation.
The Hoisting Association.
House Movers' and Shorers' Association.
Association of Interior Decorators and Cabinet Makers.
The Iron League Erectors' Association.
Marble Industry Employers' Association.
Mason Contractors' Association.
Metal Ceiling Association of New York.
Association Manufacturers of Metal Covered Doors and Windows.
Mosaic Employers' Association.
Ornamental Bronze and Iron Masters' Association.
Association of Master Painters and Decorators of the City of New
Parquet Flooring Association.
Contracting Plumbers' Association of the City of New York.
Greater New York.
Master Steam and Hot Water Fitters' Association of New York.
Tile, Grate, and Mantel Association.
Manufacturing Woodworkers' Association.
The trade-unions represented in the general arbitration plan comprise 31 distinctly separate unions having contractual relations with. employers' associations engaged in building operations in Greater New York and vicinity. These 31 building trade-unions represent approximately 90,000 members in good standing, employed exclusively in the building industry of Greater New York.
The unions represented in the plan of arbitration are local organizations of the following national or international unions:
United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners.
International Association of Bridge and Structural Iron Workers.
International Hod Carriers and Building Laborers.
Ceramic, Mosaic, and Encaustic Tile Layers and Helpers' International Union.
Amalagamated Sheet Metal Workers' International Alliance.
International Slate and Tile Roofers' Union.
American Brotherhood of Cement Workers.
Stonemasons' International Union.
Bluestone Cutters' International Union.
International Association of Steam and Hot Water Fitters.
International Brotherhood of Composition Roofers, Damp and
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
Progress Association of Steam, Hot Water, and General Pipe
International Association of Machinists.
International Wood Carvers' Association.
Tunnel and Subway Constructors' International Union.
FINANCING THE PLAN.
The method of financing the General Arbitration Board is as follows: "The cost of maintaining the headquarters of the General Arbitration Board, including the salaries of the secretary and his assistants, shall be divided equally between the Building Trades Employers' Association and the unions collectively." "The executive committee shall have control of all receipts and expenditures." The financing of the plan for the year 1908 has been selected as showing the cost per normal year.
The contribution from the Building Trades Employers' Association to the financing of the plan is based on an equitable assessment levied on each individual employers' association by the parent organization, which in turn pays over to the General Arbitration Board the sum thus collected. The method employed by the union is to levy an assessment or per capita tax on each union covering the average membership.
BUDGET AND FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE GENERAL ARBITRATION BOARD FOR THE YEAR 1908.
PER CAPITA TAX PAID BY UNIONS DURING 1908.
Steam fitters' helpers.
Marble carvers and setters..
4, 952. 70
EXPLANATION OF CHART SHOWING PLAN OF CONCILIATION AND ARBITRATION.
The plan of arbitration and conciliation, with the employers' associations and labor unions included in the plan, is shown in the accompanying chart.
The left of the chart is intended to show the interrelation between each association of employers and the Building Trades Employers' Association. Each association claims the right of trade autonomy, but each and every firm, corporation, or establishment claiming membership in an association of employers must also become members of the parent association. In accordance with the laws of the Building Trades Employers' Association, contractual relations between employers' associations and the unions can not be consummated without the sanction of the parent association. While recognition through the General Arbitration Board to this interrelation is given, no such recognition is given to the organizations represented
on the right of the chart; or, in other words, the Building Trades Employers' Association is permitted to present grievances to the General Arbitration Board, but the unions collectively are guaranteed no such right. The General Arbitration Board fails to give the same recognition to a general council of unions as it does to a central organization of employers.
The top of the chart indicates the machinery of the General Arbitration Board, through which a grievance proceeds. The large square shows representatives of employers' associations and labor unions in the Board. This Board contains approximately 120 members, two representatives from each employers' association and two representatives from each union recognized as parties to the plan. This Board meets once a month and has the power to elect a general secretary and an executive committee of 12 members, 6 of whom are elected by the representatives of the unions and 6 others representing the employers in the General Arbitration Board. The chairman and the vice chairman of the Board are elected semiannually by and from the members of the Board. One of these officers must be an employer and the other an employee.
The square below represents the executive committee of 12 members, which is vested with the power to act as a board of conciliation as well as with all other powers vested in the General Board, between regular meetings of that Board, except to amend the code of procedure or fix the manner in which and by whom the expenses of special arbitration boards shall be paid. The members of this committee serve for a period of six months. The committee meets once a week or upon the call of the secretary, and reports all its proceedings to the General Arbitration Board. All the findings and decisions of this board are final and binding unless disapproved by the General Arbitration Board. The salaries of the members of the executive committee are at the rate of $300 per year.
The small square represents special arbitration boards. These boards consist of not less than four members chosen from the General Arbitration Board, representative of employers and the unions. The compensation for members of this board is $6 per day. To these boards are referred all questions which are considered subjects for arbitration. In case of failure on the part of a special arbitration board to render a decision the entire matter is referred to an umpire, whose decision is final.
The center of the chart shows a series of local trade boards. The plan provides that where a trade agreement exists between an employers' association and a union all local trade disputes must be settled by a trade board, with an umpire if necessary, the decisions to be considered final. Failure to agree upon an umpire or failure to abide by the decision of a trade board automatically places the grievance in the hands of the General Arbitration Board.