Fire Fighters Treasurer in Wisconsin Sentenced for Embezzlement

On November 14, 2019, William Drath, former treasurer of International Association of Fire Fighters Local 487, was sentenced in Eau Claire (Wisconsin) County Court to three years of probation and 480 hours of community service for embezzling more than $18,000 from the Eau Claire union over a six-year period. He had pleaded guilty that August following a complaint filed by his successor with local police. Drath had retired from the Eau Claire fire department shortly after the discovery of the thefts.… Read More ➡

Fire Fighters Union Boss Schaitberger Accused of Skimming $6M

Harold Schaitberger (in photo), longtime head of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), has a reputation for wielding unchallenged power. But that power soon may dissipate in the wake of a memo prepared by the union’s number-two man. On March 20, IAFF Secretary-Treasurer Edward Kelly circulated a 105-page internal memorandum accusing Schaitberger and Kelly predecessor Thomas Miller of misusing or outright stealing about $6 million in union funds, especially pension assets. The memo, which followed an outside audit, also accuses Schaitberger of concealing these losses from the union executive board. Schaitberger disputes the charges, calling them “reckless and destructive.” But the IRS, the Department of Labor and the U.S. Attorney’s Office are conducting a probe that may conclude otherwise.

The International Association of Fire Fighters, which represents more than 300,000 firefighters in the U.S. and Canada, is a very influential public-sector union. And Harold Schaitberger is a big reason … Read More ➡