Brothers and Sisters, Well, it looks like we made it through another hot summer in the Valley. As we start to get into the Holiday Season it is important to take a breather and look what we accomplished this year. We have moved into the Centralized Dues System, Northern California Glaziers Master Agreement and Sacramento […]October 12, 2021
There are no scheduled Holiday’s or DDO’S for the remainder of September or the month of October.
Fresno City Wide Project Labor Agreement.
I recently attended the Fresno City Council Meeting on September 2nd 2021 via ZOOM for the purpose of speaking on behalf of DC16/LU294, FMTK Building Trades and the FMTK Central Labor Council in support of the recently negotiated Project Labor Agreement between the City of Fresno and the FMTK Building trades. In person representing the building trades was Secretary Treasure Chuck Riojas and also on the ZOOM were several Business Representatives and Business Managers from Various Building Trades Union Affiliates. Also present was Jolene Kramer a Labor Law Attorney representing the Building Trades during the negotiations. She is employed by Weinberg Roger and Rosenfeld.
There was a lot of opinions and asks for support from the aforementioned. But make no mistake the Anti-Union Organizations were there in full force and had the complete backing of the City Manager of Fresno Thomas Esqueda. Mr. Esqueda was the former Director of Public Utilities for the City of Fresno and Chosen by Mayor Jerry Dyer as the City Manager when Dyer won the Mayor’s Race. Mr. Esqueda appeared to be very ignorant about the process in which Prevailing Wage is enforced in California which surprised me very much. Ok it really did not I believe Mr. Esqueda is very familiar with Labor Law in California (after all like I mentioned he was the Director of Public Works Utilities) and that he was just doing everything he could to get a no vote from the City Council. After the City Council gave their thoughts on the negotiating process and all of the public comment the President of the City Council Councilmember Luis Chavez Called for the Vote. The Motion to approve was made by Council Member Miguel Arias and the second was made by Councilmember Esmeralda Soria. There were four additional yes votes by Council Members Nelson Esparza, Tyler Maxwell, Luis Chavez and Mike Karbassi. The one lone NO vote came from Gary Breadfield. The Project Labor Agreement was passed.
All along Mr. Esqueda was informing the Council Members that he was going to make sure that the PLA was going to have to be voted twice by the City Council. The only way this would occur is if Mayor Dyer Vetoed the PLA. The following week it happened Mayor Jerry Dyer VETOED the Project Labor Agreement. And as promised Councilmembers Arias, Soria, Esparza, Chavez and Maxwell voted 6-1 with again the lone No vote coming from Councilmember Gary Breadfield to overturn the Mayor’s Veto and put in place the PLA. This occurred on September 16th, 2021 at the scheduled City Council Meeting.
This vote to accept this PLA not once but twice is Historic for the City of Fresno. It wasn’t to long ago that it was a violation of the city policy to even bring or mention the Idea of a Project Labor Agreement to the City Council. What changed it? Elections changed it and Elections have consequences. We all put a lot of work in over the years to seek and support Local Candidates that support working people like you. We achieved getting those people elected to the City Council and their promise to support Labor and the working class in this City was cemented with this recent vote. We must continue to be vigilant in supporting those that support Labor regardless of their Political Affiliation. We have some Major Local Elections coming up in 2022 and we will need all the VAC support from our members to ensure we continue to expand our market share increasing ours for our members within the regions that they reside. ORGANIZE!!!!