BLET: Hahs Removed from Office, Must Pay
Published: March 25, 2008
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Hahs has been removed from office as head of the Brotherhood of
Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET).
A three-member Teamster panel has removed Don Hahs from office and
suspended him from Teamster membership for one year for violating his
fiduciary duty to the union.
Last year, Hahs was charged with embezzling over $58,000 in members’
money for basketball tickets, fishing trips, hotel-room movies, and
unauthorized travel for his wife.
Hahs is barred from holding any BLET office until the end of his current
term in 2010, suspended from Teamster membership until March 20, 2009,
and must pay a fine of $44,963. Hoffa has approved the decision of the
The panel, which included one BLET official and two Teamster officials,
refused to convict Hahs of embezzlement. But they did agree that his
spending was a serious misuse of members’ money.
Even after his suspension ends, Hahs won’t be able to run again for
office. The next BLET elections are in 2010, but the Teamster
constitution requires that a member must be in continuous good standing
for 24 months to be eligible to run—that would be 2011 for Hahs. His
career in the union is finished.
Ed Rodzwicz has taken over as president of the BLET. Hahs has appealed
the decision, but he is unlikely to prevail.
Throughout this case, Hahs has claimed that he was only doing what BLET
presidents before him did. “Hahs says ‘everybody did this,’” said Hugh
Sawyer, the local chairman of BLET Div. 316. “That’s no excuse. It’s
never OK to steal from our members. This is a union. Not a corporation.
Union dues must be spent on union matters.”