Former Machinists District President Banned From Office

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By Tyrone Richardson

Sept. 19 — The former president of International Association of Machinists District 70 in Wichita, Kan., is banned from holding “any union position for a period of five years,” an IAM spokesman confirmed to Bloomberg BNA.

Frank Molina Jr. was suspended as president of District 70 on Feb. 2, the same day IAM headquarters assumed trusteeship of the district office because of its violations of IAM rules. Allegations include “mass overspending” and “no proper approval of lodge expenses,” the union announced then.

The IAM informed union members about Molina’s five-year ban and about headquarters’ continued control of the district’s day-to-day operations, spokesman Frank Larkin told Bloomberg BNA Sept. 19.

Molina can appeal the ban, Larkin added. Trusteeship of the District 70 will be resolved after the results of upcoming local elections, which were suspended when the IAM assumed control of the district’s operations, he said.

Federal Agencies Involved

The IAM has also met with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Labor Department regarding District 70, according to a March 30 notice to union members.

District 70 represents about 10,500 workers. Molina received an annual salary of $128,239, in addition to $4,220 in disbursements for “official business,” in 2015, DOL records show.

District 70 oversees several locals, which represent workers within the Kansas aerospace manufacturing market, including workers at Spirit Aerosystems, a Boeing Co. supplier, according to the IAM website.

Suspended President Alleged Defamation

Molina sued several IAM officials March 14, including Larkin and IAM President Robert Martinez ( Molina v. Machinists , Kan. Dist. Ct., No. 16CV0605, 3/14/16 ). The filing in Kansas District Court alleged wrongful termination, breach of contract and defamation of character.

Bloomberg BNA could not reach Molina or his listed attorney, N. Trip Shawver in Wichita, for comment Sept. 19.

The IAM asked a federal judge April 19 to rule on the case, arguing the state claim is preempted by the Labor-Management Relations Act and the Labor-Management Disclosure and Reporting Act ( Molina v. Machinists , D. Kan., No. 6:16-cv-01099, 4/13/16 ). A judge had not ruled on the case as of Sept. 19, according to court records.

To contact the reporter on this story: Tyrone Richardson in Washington at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Susan J. McGolrick at

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