PAUL STREET, et al.,



Case No. C94-253R


Judge Barbara Jacobs Rothstein


Objection to Settlement

The undersigned, one of the class members herein (hereafter "Objector"), hereby submits his objection to the proposed settlement which is scheduled to be considered for approval before this Court on June 12, 1998, and states as follows:

I understand that Plaintiffs' counsel and the Defendants have agreed to settle this class action pension case under the following general terms:

a. A five-year break-in-service provision will be put in place retroactive to 1974;

b. the reciprocity provisions will be liberalized;

c. all laborer service, no matter when forfeited, will be reinstated if an individual accrues 250 hours either in the Alaska Plan or in a reciprocal plan by June 30, 2001; and

d. The defendants will pay whatever costs, attorneys' fees and class compensation as ordered by the Court.

This cause was commenced after it became clear that many union and non-union members would never meet the 250 hour requirement without incurring further breaks-in-service. This was true even when I was an "A List" member of the union and actively sought work everyday. While I am still a member of the subject union, I am currently employed by the Fairbanks North Star Borough as a city bus driver and participate in a state pension plan which is separate and entirely distinct from the subject pension plan. The proposed settlement requiring me to put in additional time to qualify for a claim benefit of partial termination, is virtually worthless for me, other union members in my position and for nonunion members.

In order for me to put in the additional requisite time under this settlement, I would have to quit my current position that I have held for nearly four year and stand in line at the union hall, with a dim prospect for a work assignment which, at best, may come years down the road as a member at the bottom of the "A List". Not having worked out of the hiring hall for many years excludes my options for acquiring a "rehire". The chance that a non-union member will ever meet the 250 hour requirement under this settlement is even less likely, if not impossible.

There is a lack of union assigned work and any work that becomes available goes to current union members who are either being re-hired to positions that they once held (up to five years before the re-hiring) or to other members at the top of the "A List" . On the other hand, members at the bottom of the "A List" and newly rejoined members who are automatically placed at the bottom of the "C List" have almost no hope of ever receiving work ,much less continuous service to meet the 250 hour requirement. The Alaska Laborers Union hierarchy operates in a political manner that makes it nearly impossible for outsiders like me and others to get work to meet the 250 hour requirement. In addition, it is pointless for non-union members to rejoin the union if there is no real potential to obtain work.

The proposed settlement only benefits those class members who are still members of the union at the top of the "A List", those who are already vested and have forfeited pipeline hours. It provides no benefit to class members like myself and those other class members who are no longer members of the union. As such, the settlement is unfair because it fails to provide real relief to myself and the other class members who are not at the top of the "A List" or are non-union members.

A conflict of interest exists within the class. Some class members have an interest in the approval of the settlement because it is beneficial to them while the interests of the remainder of the class will be sacrificed. The request for approval of the settlement should be denied with respect to persons who are union members that are not at the top of the "A List, not eligible for "rehires" and for any nonunion member. I request that separate sub-classes be certified so as to properly represent all of the different interests in this case and to continue to litigate their respective class claims. I would be willing to be the class representative of one of these sub-classes. Accordingly, I ask that the settlement be rejected.

Alternatively, due to the fact that I have recently brought this matter to the attention of counsel, I request a short continuance of this hearing for 6o days in order to have the counsel I spoke with or other counsel submit a more complete objection.

WHEREFORE, the undersigned, respectfully requests this Court to deny approval of the settlement or in the alternative to grant Objector a short continuance of the hearing on the approval of the settlement.

Respectfully submitted,


Name: CHRIS WHITE___________________

Address: PO BOX 72938_________________

FAIRBANKS, ALASKA 99707_____________

Phone: (907) 456-2543___________________


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