Tuesday, July 29, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Amend PLA language to benefit Fairfield, Solano

Web_OurView_YourView

By
From page A8 | July 13, 2014 |

City Council members are poised Tuesday to approve a project labor agreement with the Napa-Solano Building and Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO, to cover virtually all work associated with Fairfield’s train station project.

This is a massive undertaking that will help shape the city for the remainder of the 21st century, at an estimated cost of $81.5 million. Construction on a major piece of the project – to take Peabody Road over the existing railroad tracks near Vanden Road, is scheduled to begin next summer and will shut down the roadway for about a year.

Proponents of project labor agreements contend that they keep project costs in check and bring projects to conclusion on time. Opponents contend that they ultimately increase taxpayer costs and limit the pool of qualified people who can work on the projects – essentially shutting out shops that are not unionized.

Council members when they first considered a labor agreement for the train station project directed staff to include local-hire provisions and a plan to put qualified veterans to work on the project. The proposed agreement does both, but does not go far enough in the local-hire provisions.

Specifically, the proposed agreement establishes an objective that not less than 25 percent of all hours worked on the project be worked by residents of Napa and Solano counties.

The staff doesn’t even have the courtesy in its report to the council to list Solano County first. Beyond that, we believe the objective should be higher – 75 percent – for the two counties, that 75 percent of those hires be Solano County residents, and that 75 percent of those hires be Fairfield residents. This is, after all, a Fairfield project.

Solano County’s unemployment rate is 6.6 percent compared to Napa County’s 4.5 percent, based on the latest information available from the state. Fairfield’s rate is 7.2 percent. Solano County residents need these jobs more than those who live in Napa County do. Fairfield residents specifically need the employment boost. The Fairfield council has a chance to make this happen for the people they are elected to represent.

The staff report notes that the unions have agreed “to exert their utmost efforts” to achieve the 25-percent objective. That’s not good enough. The increased percentages should be firm floors, not agreed-upon goals. If people want these jobs, they can relocate here to get them. In doing so they may deprive a current Fairfield resident of a job on the project, but at least the workers would be more likely to spend dollars they earn in Fairfield, in Fairfield, or at least within the county.

Again, this is a Fairfield project.

Language contained in the proposed agreement’s local-hire provisions defines the local area as “Napa and Solano counties, the communities to be served by the project.” This is a Capitol Corridor line. It serves several counties and numerous communities from Auburn to the east, through Sacramento and then Davis before traversing Solano County and moving into the heart of the Bay Area and down into San Jose. It does not pass through Napa County.

The agreement should be honest about the communities served by this Fairfield project. We’re of a mind that a bus connection from Martinez, through Vallejo and then on to Napa does not qualify Napa County as a community “served” by this Fairfield project.

Finally, it’s no secret that vocational education at the high school level is virtually nonexistent given the past several years of education budget cuts combined with the emphasis on testing with No Child Left Behind. Likewise, it’s too soon to tell if vocational programs will see a resurgence with implementation of Common Core standards.

What’s clear is that a path to a career in the trades is not so clear as it once was.

Solano Community College targets specific trades through its various educational offerings, and crafted its own project labor agreement for the first of the projects related to the $348 million Measure Q in part to guarantee that those projects will allow internships in the construction trades – internships that Solano College students may benefit from.

The proposed labor agreement for the train station project notes that the contractor will be required to contribute to the union’s apprenticeship fund – among many others that include vacation and pension funds. It also notes that the contractor will hire apprentices in their respective crafts, within the parameters of the law. The proposed agreement limits those apprentices to people who are taking part in a joint apprenticeship program that’s approved by the state.

That’s too limiting. Apprenticeships should be open to participants in programs that have either state or federal approval, regardless of union affiliation. The proposed agreement should also be amended as well to target local residents to fill those internships.

Bottom line: The Fairfield council has telegraphed that it will likely sign off on a project labor agreement for work done on the train station project. That being the case, they should beef up the agreement to guarantee more Fairfield and Solano County hires for both jobs and internships, and to open up apprenticeships to a larger group of prospective apprentices.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 3 comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Rick WoodJuly 13, 2014 - 7:16 am

    Hear hear! You're on the right track, DR. If a public agency is going to adopt a PLA, it should be to ensure the agency gets what IT wants, not what the trade unions want. To the degree they are inconsistent, the agency should prevail. The PLA should still be pro-union, but it shouldn't be imposed on an agency by the unions just because the unions have acquired the votes on the agency board.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • RodJuly 21, 2014 - 7:00 am

    Again we see the local goverment Bullied into Labor agreements by the Unions. If the city council does not give the Unions what they want they will be attacked and pushed out of office. All this on Tax Payers exspence we are becoming Oakland.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Mac HeebeyJuly 22, 2014 - 5:09 pm

    plas are another sign of how sick our society has become. plas are union affirmative action, mandating joining a labor union to participate in projects that taxpayers fund is communism. A union vet turned to me and said he supported plas so I asked, why would you shed your blood on the battle field for liberty only to piss it away in a board room. It is communism plain and simple. If unions are such a good business model, why must they hide behind discriminatory government goons like the ones voting tonight. you people are sick

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

 
Library teens plan summer reading party

By Glen Faison | From Page: A3

 
Weather for Tuesday, July 29, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page:

 
Big-rig driver strikes telephone lines in Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A6, 2 Comments | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: July 27, 2014

By Glen Faison | From Page: A12

Suisun City police log: June 27, 2014

By Glen Faison | From Page: A12

 
Caltrans makes I-80 lane change

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3, 5 Comments

 
Fairfield tries to end Cordelia Road detour

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3, 15 Comments | Gallery

 
‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ primed for big screen

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A7 | Gallery

.

US / World

 
Sacramento Gold Rush Days canceled due to drought

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Man charged in teen’s 9-month disappearance

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Deal to improve veterans’ health care costs $17B

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment | Gallery

Suspect dead, 2 marshals and cop wounded in NYC

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
New fears about Ebola spread after plane scare

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 1 Comment

In Iraq’s Mosul, radicals unleash their vision

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 2 Comments

 
Fighting in Ukraine prompts residents to flee

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
Witnesses: Thunderstorm hit beach without warning

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

Suspect’s mom also charged in Long Beach burglary

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
City: Emails show ‘cozy’ ties of PG&E, regulator

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

Pool water dumped in South Tahoe; resort fires 3

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Additional charge filed in California wildfire

By The Associated Press | From Page:

California governor takes dig at Texas guard plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: , 2 Comments | Gallery

 
.

Opinion

Editorial cartoons for July 29, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page:

 
 
.

Living

Horoscopes for July 29, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B5

 
Today in History for July 29, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page:

I don’t want to have intimate contact since learning I had a STD

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page:

 
Community Calendar: July 29, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page:

.

Entertainment

Kevin Bacon brings his ‘Six Degrees’ to Comic-Con

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Sarah Palin launches online subscription channel

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 1 Comment | Gallery

‘Sharknado’ sequel has bite and lots of laughs

By Frazier Moore | From Page: A7 | Gallery

 
TVGrid July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

.

Sports

Giants lose 5th straight, 5-0 to Pirates

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
 
Lakers finally confirm Byron Scott is new coach

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Raiders relying on healthy Watson to solidify line

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
This date in sports history for Tuesday, July 29, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Quarterback Johnny Manziel’s day at Browns camp

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
Judge OKs record-setting $2B sale of Clippers

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

Humphrey to savor Hall of Fame day with ‘wingman’

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Rays’ Archer: ‘Never saw Hank Aaron flip his bat’

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Reed HOF induction gives Bills cause to celebrate

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

In the Pits: Gordon eyeing 5th title after big Brickyard win

By Jenna Fryer | From Page: | Gallery

 
Marketing agreement an obstacle in US bid for 2024

By The Associated Press | From Page:

Sailors to navigate dirty water in 1st Rio test

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Manningham back with Giants, with no guarantees

By The Associated Press | From Page:

.

Business

Contracts to buy US homes slip in June

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
FAA proposes to fine Southwest Airlines $12M

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

Stocks pause as traders await key economic news

By The Associated Press | From Page:

 
Zillow buying Trulia to build real estate titan

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

Dollar Tree steps up fight, buys Family Dollar

By The Associated Press | From Page: | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

.

Comics

B.C. July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Get Fuzzy July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Baldo July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baby Blues July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Rose is Rose July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Zits July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Crossword July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Garfield July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Pickles July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Frank and Ernest July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Beetle Bailey July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Peanuts July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Word Sleuth July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Cryptoquote July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

For Better or Worse July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Bridge July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Wizard of Id July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Dilbert July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Sally Forth July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Blondie July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Sudoku July 29

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5