This Monday we will have a chance to further the reform of our Local
by electing a person with years of experience inside and outside of the
Local 47 structure, David Schubach.

Even now, some are afraid to vote where others can see them. How
absurd is that? How badly that speaks toward the vindictiveness of the
present powers controlling our Local.

Unlike past elections, steps have been taken to make sure you can mark
your ballot in private. NO ONE will know how you vote. Each member will
be walking up to the ballot box and placing their ballot in the box
themselves. It will never leave your hand until it’s put in the ballot box.


This vote is too critical to be manipulated by ANY small minority. Therefore,
without attempting to influence how you vote, we urge you to show up AND

Food will be served before the meeting, COME EARLY, we anticipate the
parking lot filling very early!




There are more and more sessions happening with the new AFM Video
Game contract. We had a discussion with some members who recently took
part in two days of double sessions. They were thrilled with the work. the group
sounded great AND the players were not the usual suspects! They
were not thrilled with the pay on the job though, $60 per hour plus health and
welfare and pension that is higher than normal (12%).

However, once they realized that this is NEW work that would never have been done
here if not for the new AFM Contract, they realized that it’s the AFM actions
that have re-captured that work for Los Angeles!


We hear again and again about getting into a race to bottom. Well, we’ve
come close to already losing a race to the bottom. A race for the work. If
you went to ten films fifteen years ago, chances are nine out of ten would have
been done here. Go to ten films today and you’ll be lucky if two out of
the ten were scored here.

We’ve already lost the race to the bottom, we need to get back INTO the race.



We were appalled to hear of member Michelle Byrne being walked out
of the July meeting by Parliamentarian Paul Castillo and Local 47 Counsel
Lewis Levy for “broadcasting” the meeting, when she answered her phone
while the meeting took place.

Obviously, recording meetings is not illegal, since we have a secretary
doing just that. We’ve checked Federal, State and Federation bylaws and
found NO law prohibiting such actions at our union’s meetings. We’re not
lawyers, and it’s possible we missed something, so if you know different,
call us on it!.

If the board does not want members answering their phones or having
conversations or sharing the meeting with other members via cel phone, let them
enact a bylaw, because as of now the bylaws are agnostic on the subject.

..and Michele Bryne is at the very least owed an apology by Mr. Castillo
and Mr. Levy.

See IATSI’s position on meetings below:


Excerpted from /IATSE Local 695

All labor unions are required to keep “minutes” of their membership and
board meetings. Unfortunately, for most members, the minutes taken are
only as good as the person transcribing the information from the dialog
during the meetings. Some Recording Secretaries cannot keep up with the
conversation taking place and others cannot read their own shorthand notes.
In some cases, the minutes are created after the membership or board meeting,
so as to suit the desires of the officials of the labor organization.

Even in the advent of stenography (The skill or process of writing in
shorthand.) by a professional shorthand reporter, labor unions have still
chosen to rely on the crude notes taken by the Recording Secretary. Labor
unions have even defied using tape-recording devices and/or film and tape
cameras to document membership and board meetings; again, most likely
because of the officer’s behavior going on behind the scenes.

Transcripts of union membership and board meetings and/or electronic
copies would provide the members with an accurate record of what transpired
and what was decided. Moreover, these devices would eliminate the “he said,
she said” arguments, and would carve in stone exactly what was said. But, again,
most union officials do not want an accurate record because it would not afford
them the “wiggle room” that they have with the notes taken by the Recording

At the 3rd Quarter Membership meeting of the International Alliance of
Theatrical Stage Employees, Local 695 (“Local 695”), the meeting was
transcribed by a Certified Shorthand Reporter (“Reporter”), thanks to the
motion brought at the previous board meeting by board member, Rusty
Amodeo. The shorthand reporter was present at this meeting and her equipment
was set-up in the front of the assembly hall, in plain view of all the members.
As the members approached the floor to speak to the assembly, they provided
the reporter with their name. This information was necessary to make sure that
the statement transcribed was attributed to the correct individual.

Local 695 may or may not continue to hire a reporter to transcribe the
membership meetings; most likely not since the transcript will prove to
be the corrupt officials undoing. Nevertheless, the meetings will be tape-
recorded from now on; possibly videotaped, as well. This way, not only
will there be an accurate record, but the magnetic record will provide the
voice inflection of each individual who is speaking. This is something that
is not available on a transcript, unless stated for the record.

Some individuals who attend the membership and board meetings may object
to being recorded, however, when they attend a public gathering such as these
meetings, they have zero say as to the devices used to document the information.
They may, however, choose not to remain at the meeting or just not speak.


In the case of a union membership or board meeting, California Penal Code
§ 632 DOES NOT APPLY. Section 632 states in pertinent part:

“(a) Every person who, intentionally and without the consent of all parties to
a confidential communication, by means of any electronic amplifying or
recording device, eavesdrops upon or records the confidential communication,
whether the communication is carried on among the parties in the presence of
one another or by means of a telegraph, telephone, or other device, except a radio,
shall be punished by a fine not exceeding two thousand five hundred dollars
($2,500), or imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding one year, or in the
state prison, or by both that fine and imprisonment….”

Section 632 defines “person” as follows:

“(b) The term ‘person’ includes an individual, business association,
partnership, corporation, limited liability company, or other legal entity, and
an individual acting or purporting to act for or on behalf of any government
or subdivision thereof, whether federal, state, or local, but excludes an individual
known by all parties to a confidential communication to be overhearing or
recording the communication.”

Section 632 defines “confidential communication” as follows:

“(c) The term ‘confidential communication’ includes any communication carried
on in circumstances as may reasonably indicate that any party to the communication
desires it to be confined to the parties thereto, but excludes a communication made
in a public gathering or in any legislative, judicial, executive or administrative
proceeding open to the public, or in any other circumstance in which the parties to
the communication may reasonably expect that the communication may be overheard
or recorded.”


A union membership or board meeting is not only a “public gathering,” but is
not intended to be confidential. By its very nature, the members in attendance
of the membership meeting, or those unable to attend are entitled to know everything
that went on at the meeting. Similarly, board meetings conducted by union officials
are also not intended to be confidential because the elected officials are obligated
to provide the membership with ALL information that was presented, discussed,
or decided on at a board meeting. Therefore, a surreptitious tape-recording of either
of these meetings is fully legal, BOTH UNDER CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS.
No, criminal charges can be made by a prosecutor and no civil complaint brought
for Invasion of Privacy. Members who attend a public gathering at a membership
meeting have no expectation of privacy. Moreover, board members have no
expectation of privacy during a union board meeting because their actions are not
for their own benefit, but are for the benefit of the entire membership they represent.



We recently told you of VP Trombetta’s videotaping the lobby and
its environs for a renovation contractor, including the area that
includes the Referral Service.

This board has already spent thousands of dollars consulting
contractors and designers when they and we know that the
membership passed a motion protecting the Referral Service
office from being moved.

Renovation is a good thing. Using “renovation” partly as a
pretense to move the Referral Service and making it less visible is
not. It’s also against a membership mandate, one we will protect.



The comments below are the views of the contributors and not
necessarily those of the COMMITTEE.



I’m reading the Overture and getting madder and madder. During regular
elections officers are not allowed to have articles or pictures in the paper
so they won’t have extra influence. So I was interested to see if the temporary
officer (Leslie Lashinsky) who is running for office was allowed to have an
article this month. She has three, and a picture, and announcements about her
upcoming gigs! And remember she is also the editor of the paper. Maybe there
is no rule about this conflict to cover a special election like we are having but
there should be. This tells me everything I need to know about her judgment,
or lack of.


Dear Committee,
We need to establish some kind of term limits like the rest of the world.
This is something that I was working on with Richard before he passed.
I believe that the elections for officers and board members should be like
Senators and Executive Branch members of the United States. We should off
set the years so that an election is every year for an office. We think it
would be too much but I believe it will be the safest way to protect what is
going on. The key is absentee ballots and making sure no administration is
going to have all their “people” on the board. If anyone runs as an officer
for more than 3 terms (6 years), then they cannot run again and the same for
the board, starting immediately if you already have 3 terms in. Then the
rule would be that you cannot run again for 4 years. This will weed out the
bad blood and give others the opportunity to run.

We still need an open board meeting once a month in the auditorium that is
online if possible and streamed live or for later viewing.

We also need an on staff attorney that works in the office to answer
questions for free to members 1 day a week and then shows members how to
file small claims suits and gives advice for larger cases. They then meet
once a month to file like a field trip down to the court house to get it
done. I have seen this work. There are Offices that offer this service not
free of course but to our members it should be and then have a small return
or gratis for the service. Something can be worked out I am sure.
I have talked to a member (attorney) that is now out of town that was
thinking of coming back to run for secretary. I think we need two
secretaries in this case. One head secretary and another for legal and
separate duties such as I described making having a business or
entertainment law degree as a prerequisite. There are people out there for
this, not a musician or union member per se, I think it’s important to have

I served on the board for four years and I believe that this insider info will
help clear the slate in the future.


Congratulations to Charles Fernandez for his interview with Mark Northam.
It was clear, to the point, accurate, and more polite than I would have been.
I hope everyone in the Local hears it. That goes for Local 47 leadership as
well except that they appear to be deaf and worse over there.

You can hear the interview here:

I believe 47 leadership believes in the union, but they are also facilitating its
demise through their inability to understand, adapt and lead in a positive
way. I don’t want to seem harsh but the interview with Dr. Bobby Rodriguez
was pathetic, in my opinion. If he represents Local 47 leadership then the
union is in all kinds of trouble — which it is.

Let me put my cynicism aside for the moment and assume Local 47’s
leadership is motivated by the highest of principles. Unfortunately they
will continue in their failure because, 1) They simply don’t understand the
historical changes that are taking place in the world’s markets today, which
leads to 2) an inability to see in any direction except backward. There is no
hope of recapturing the past. Successful leadership means, BY DEFINITION,
guidance into the future. There is NO successful leadership in Local 47.

Apparently “scab” is “normal terminology” in union-speak, even if applied to
long-term loyal union members. Well, where I come from “schmuck” is commonly
used also.

Ironically, a lot of these people in positions of power today are products of the
’60’s who have given extensive lip service to being “progressive,” “democratic,”
“concerned about the children” etc. ad nauseum. The presumption has always
been that given the opportunity these people will correct the sins of the past and
facilitate a better future of, among other things, honesty and integrity. What a joke.
The current leadership in both the RMA and Local 47 demonstrate the same time-
honored failures and corruptibility of past power brokers, and like the mediocre
minds of the past habitually place blame on other people, people like a community
of decent dedicated musicians in Los Angeles who are trying to do an honest days

The RMA and 47 leadership should be ashamed, the schmucks.

Rick Blanc
(Always include name please if published)


Hello _______,
Do you think after repeatedly breaking the law regarding Beck objectors,
that the union officials at Local 47 would resort to violence if they thought
they could get away with it? My question is directed to Lou Levy, legal
counsel for 47. A yes or no will do.


I believe the RMA wants to reduce the membership of the
AFM nationwide and get rid of many of the small locals while at the same
time, slowly increase their voting power at the convention. In their
view, as the AFM drops in the number of locals and members, their voting
power will increase, thereby allowing them to eventually control the

At that point, they will insist that the electronic music
department be turned over to them to administer and at that time there
will be plenty of money for them to do whatever they want, including
taking legal action to suppress the rest of the AFM membership. They
have the power through intimidation to make those 150 players pay as
much money as RMA wants whenever they want. So they hope the new
membership program fails because it will interfere with their plans if
the membership increases.

Also, they want to keep the salaries of local officers and national officers
low because they don’t want to encourage those with any ability to stay in
the AFM labor movement or to strive
for an AFM leadership position. In different words, let’s keep the
salaries low so we don’t get any quality individuals running for these
jobs and let’s create such a ruckus within the AFM that the locals will
surely vote Tom out the next time. In the meantime, let’s make sure the
AFM doesn’t have any resources to run a membership department or file
suits against some of the motion picture companies or record companies
so that we can:

1. Keep locals from increasing their membership.
2. Accuse Tom of not enforcing contracts.
3. Drain the AFM of their resources by making their legal fees high.

Hal of course doesn’t have a clue to any of this.


…… about the INDIE CONFERENCE.

Concerning the recent Indie Conference at Local 47…….

This was one of the best conferences I have attended in years in the
music field. I hope they all come back! Dr. Foy

(EDITOR’S MORE: We can all thank Amie Moore of member services
with the assistance of Lisa Haley, President of the FMA for their dedication
in making the 2007 Indie Conference happen.)


When you suggest sending a sub to vote you should make it clear that no
one can vote in your name. They have to vote for themselves. One head, one
count. Is this too nit-picky? I can see the opposing side accusing you of trying
to stuff the ballot box.


The real problem with the union (international and local), is that there is
really no reward for being a good union member. If someone goes Fi-Core and
figures out that this semi-scab organization really isn’t getting them
enough work the union allows them back with a hearty hand shake and a
welcome. It has happened. If someone gets caught on a cash date the union
makes sure they get a contract and not a fine. Same thing for casuals. When
is the last time you have seen anything but a failure to pay work dues issue at
the trial board? If unionism is not pure it doesn’t work. When it is pure it works
better than fine. This anything for a contract policy encourages everyone to do
whatever they want. After all, what is the worst that will happen. They will get
a contract. HaHaHaHaHa. Sick policy. And that’s the real reason the union doesn’t
work. And that’s the truth.


I can tell you that going BECK is not the answer – New Era scoring
cannot get an outside client because who wants to be the first to
be associated with the buy out orchestra in LA??

Lets say you’re a big composer in LA and you get a must non-
union score – but you also get many union scores in LA too – do
you want that fall out from the
union people every time you use New Era – hell no…..

The reason Seattle and other places around the globe are successful
can’t get a job in LA other than a session for the guy that owns
New Era (who happens to be a music library guy- a very big and
successful one at that)

It’s too far down the river – and too easy to continue biz as usual
– let’s go to Seattle so we are not crapping in our own backyard



Be early, get fed and do your duty and VOTE.!

Until Next Time,


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