Letters to editor

Council must reject PLA for train station project

By April 16, 2014

I am urging our mayor and City Council members to vote “no” on a project labor agreement for the upcoming train station project.

It has been proven over and over that PLAs add 10 to 15 percent to the cost of public work projects. Our city cannot afford these additional costs. We passed Measure P because our citizens felt our city was responsible with our tax money. Approving a PLA will show they are not fiscally responsible. We cannot afford a possible additional $10 million-plus to this project.

Councilman John Mraz cites reasons to vote for a PLA are “to avoid cost overruns and quality problems.” The way to avoid these problems is to ensure proper design and proper contract administration. John seems to think a PLA will stop change orders on the project. Change orders are typically generated either due to poor design or changes in the scope of work that benefit the owner. These changes are always approved by the owner prior to the work.

If you’re concerned about getting knowledgeable and quality contractors, you have a prequalification process that weeds out subpar contractors. Competitive wages are not an issue, because all contractors (union and nonunion alike) working on public work projects are required to pay their employees union scale wages.

My fellow citizens, please join me at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Fairfield Council chamber to urge our council members to vote no on this PLA. Help save our precious tax dollars.

June Johnsen


Letter to the Editor


Discussion | 11 comments

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  • CD BrooksApril 15, 2014 - 5:37 am

    June, great letter! The majority of the citizens here do not want this project in the first place. The over pass on Peabody is needed and that should have been started long ago. Transportation money should be used for improvements to current structures as well as providing parking, security and a more efficient system.

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  • S KApril 15, 2014 - 6:42 am

    CD unfortunately politicians don't care about what the MAJORITY of their constituents want. If they listened, this project would have already been put in the round file. IMO, this is the DumbestArse thing that I have read about in years, which would make the train, slow down AGAIN, right after getting up some steam in either direction. Maybe if Fairfield is so jealous of Suisun, they ought to figure out a good location for plowing down entire neighborhoods, and build a canal out to the delta, giving their people a nice waterfront view also, instead of view of I-80 :-). One train station is sufficient, and Suisun already has it.

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  • The MisterApril 15, 2014 - 7:24 am

    You're right. Diamond Jim Spering is going to make this project as costly as possible because it will increase the value of his land that's near the proposed train station. The corruption and failure of office doesn't stop at with the Sheriff and the DA... it is also found among our County Supervisors as well. VOTE OUT THE CROOKS!!!

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  • BobApril 15, 2014 - 7:27 am

    Pay attention folks The majority of workers and contractors will be,from out of the area or even out of state because they can bid quite a bit lower than local contractors can and other than hotel rooms and meals their money won't be spent anywhere near Fairfield No new cars, washing machines, Watch and learn I've seen it for over 25 years Remember SAMs club and the two workers on one 100' ladder finishing an outside wall when they both fell to their death? Good old Sam said he would take care of their families for life, has he or are they on welfare Untrained and unsafe workers is what you get if you don't go with experienced contractor and the PLA , the workers get paid the same so what's the problem?

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  • Rick WoodApril 15, 2014 - 9:26 am

    A PLA that addresses those issues is fine. But there's more in a trades-imposed PLA, isn't there? The City should design its own PLA.

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  • Mr. PracticalApril 15, 2014 - 7:00 pm

    Personally, I haven't made a decision about this project other than I wish the city were more proactive in helping the businesses that are going to be displaced. I see a lot of people saying that the majority of Fairfields residents are against the project. I would be cautious with that. Historically, those that are against something are much more vocal than those that are for it or don't care one way or the other.

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  • rlw895April 15, 2014 - 7:51 pm

    I'm with you on that one, Mr.P, good observation.

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  • Mr. PracticalApril 16, 2014 - 6:01 am

    rlw, a good example is when Walmart first proposed the Suisun store. The planning commission and council hearings were packed. Opponents out numbered supporters about five to one. Comments on message boards ran about the same. A phone survey was conducted and found that it had support from the majority of registered voters. All 5 of the council members (it was a 5-0 vote) were re-elected.

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  • LilApril 16, 2014 - 9:51 am

    I do casual carpool and ride with different people almost every day. Most of them have never even heard of the new station being planned and probably don't see a problem with it. I doubt if anybody has done any kind of survey or poll to find the number of people who like or do not like this project. I am also worried about the businesses that will be displaced. Some of those of have there for years and might have to move out of the area to find suitable replacement properties. That would be a shame.

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  • FDCApril 16, 2014 - 8:10 am

    CD got it exactly right. The train station element of this project is fishy; something stinks about building a train station where none is needed nor will ever be needed. Why, why why?

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  • CD BrooksApril 16, 2014 - 10:13 am

    Lil, I'd love to get an honest response from all the citizens in Fairfield regarding the train station. But I'd like it broken down to the station, housing, and overpass. Since the council tied the projects together, it muddles the process. I hope the Police Chief and council address the lack of coverage we all ready have and how they intend to spread themselves even thinner as this debacle continues.

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