LIUNA Local 773 placed under "emergency trusteeship" - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

LIUNA Local 773 placed under "emergency trusteeship"

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MARION -- A notice posted on the front door of Laborers' International Union of North America Local 773 in Marion says the local has come under "emergency trusteeship," meaning the national office has taken control of the local's day-to-day operations.

The notice, signed by the union's national president Terry O'Sullivan, outlines multiple charges of mismanagement by the branch's leadership.

It cites multiple reports of business manager Kevin Starr carrying firearms in a threatening manner at the union hall, union staff being "fearful" and "intimidated" and improper financial conduct from the local's board.

O'Sullivan says the trusteeship will restore democratic procedures, protect the union and correct any problems.

Union Vice president and Midwest Regional Manager John Penn will oversee operations as "trustee" of local 773.

So far, Penn hasn't responded to calls from News 3.

Local 773 leaders have seen plenty of trouble in recent years. 

Office president Matthew smith has a pending felony domestic assault charge in Missouri and a history of criminal charges. 

Additionally, a Southern Illinoisan report says the local's Treasurer John Price faces federal debarment for his actions as a member of the Alexander County Housing Authority board, and his potential involvement in the ongoing housing crisis in Cairo.

Debarment prevents individuals from working with programs that involve federal funds.

A future hearing involving the union General Executive Board will determine the justification of the trusteeship action due to "an emergency."

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