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Town Square

Now unions threaten strikes against Oakland, Easy Bay Parks as well as BART

Original post made on Jun 28, 2013

Leaders of unions representing BART, city of Oakland and East Bay Regional Park District employees threatened at a boisterous rally in front of Oakland City Hall Friday to stage a strike in the coming week.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, June 28, 2013, 2:41 PM

Comments

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Posted by Warren
a resident of Del Prado
on Jun 28, 2013 at 3:36 pm

This is typical union mentality. When the economy is struggling, they are quite & remain some what dormant. But when the economy starts to really show signs of major improvement, they throw their fat weight around & start making demands. It's no wonder that 38% of the work force in the 50s & 60s used to be union & now it's maybe 12%.


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Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 28, 2013 at 4:10 pm

I'm a private sector worker who can't move from one company to the other because the guys who do that get labeled as malcontents. This is not to mention, too, the ridiculous strain this puts on my family (spouse's job/career, kid's schools). I really wish the corporations hadn't busted up the unions the way they have since the 1950s. Back then when unions were strong, and this country was strong, a family could live on a single wage earner's income; now sometimes even both parents working isn't enough. I envy the public workers who have stayed strong and shown real solidarity in the face of jealous, mean-spirited private sector workers who are too spineless to organize their own unions.


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Posted by Vineyards
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 1, 2013 at 8:59 am

Fire the lot of them. Break the union and hire people that want to work.


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Posted by union drone
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 1, 2013 at 9:09 am

Tom, you a union rep, not a private sector worker. You are a paid propagandist trying to prop up the remnants of union power.

Yeah, back in the 50's everything was different.....before the dems took over state politics, became beholden to the unions, who drove up the price of most goods and services with their over compensation packages including exhorbitant benefits and unsustainable pension plans. At the same time, dems keep jacking up taxes and increasing regulations, all of which makes living in this state on one income impossible. Blaming the majority who work in the prviate sector is laughable, but not surprising coming from a member of the entitlement clan. Go the way of the dinosaur soon......


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Posted by Victor
a resident of Country Fair
on Jul 1, 2013 at 1:30 pm

Drones are at it again, UNIONS WILL CRIPPLE US, Monkey see monkey do, why do they need more money, so they can sit in the busses and read the newspaper and play with their cell phones, The system should be privatized, let them earn a living the old fashioned way, work for it. Park workers are no better, they walk around like they are in a coma, parks filthy, broken sprinkler heads dead lawns, get in there and earn your money, give an honest days work for a days pay and stop your whining.


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Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 1, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Unions don't cripple anyone. Bad management does. See Enron. Lehman Bros. Verizon.

BART workers, mostly skilled mechanics, make in the low 60s with some opportunity for overtime (which saves taxpayers money). Haven't had a raise in 5 years; 4 years ago gave back 100 mill to management. Management's new offer amounts to a 1-2 percent pay cut. These workers deserve a raise. 5% seems fair enough, especially since THE SYSTEM IS NOW OPERATING AT A SURPLUS.

Let's get off the rightwing hobby horse -- e.g., scabs do better jobs than union-organized workers do -- and recognize good work deserves a fair raise in pay. Period.


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Posted by Arnold
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 2, 2013 at 6:46 pm

Tom, where do you get your information:

"BART workers, mostly skilled mechanics, make in the low 60s with some opportunity for overtime (which saves taxpayers money). Haven't had a raise in 5 years; 4 years ago gave back 100 mill to management. Management's new offer amounts to a 1-2 percent pay cut. These workers deserve a raise. 5% seems fair enough, especially since THE SYSTEM IS NOW OPERATING AT A SURPLUS."

I can't find one accurate statement in your post. Just because workers don't receive cost of leaving raises doesn't mean they don't receive substantial raises for advancing their career - they do. They will also receive cost of living raises during retirement as well as a guaranteed 7.5% rate of return on their pension contributions (which doesn't even come close to covering the expense of their promised payout - just ask Nelson. Maybe he'll find a conscience) and with the cost of pensions and both healthcare/retiree healthcare costing taxpayers 100's of millions the employee cost is skyrocketing.

Let's see:

- A 37.5 hour work week
- 13 paid holidays
- 6 weeks vacation at 19 years
- zero contribution toward their own pension which increases compensation by 8% above the 72K average annual compensation (about 78K) + the average of 11K in overtime and 52K in benefits.

- 120 hours of sick leave
- overtime paid even if you don't work more than 37.5 hours per week or 7.5 hours per day (an exemption to the FLSA regarding overtime rules - just for the unions). You don't even have to work more than one day to receive overtime pay. Just take Monday through Friday off (paid with vacation leave, sick leave, or holiday pay) and you can still work on Saturday at time and one half, and Sunday at double time. 16 hours of work over the weekend translates into 28 hours of pay on top of the 37.5 hours.

- The entire thing sounds like the recent contracts approved by Pleasanton city management to the continued detriment of taxpayers. Thankfully, Bart management isn't trying to sell taxpayers on the value of cost savings as they relate to asking employees to contribute toward their own pensions - while quietly providing raises to cover the entire cost of both their own contract pension contributions/costs and that of the city employees they've negotiated with (supposedly on behalf of the taxpayers).


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Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 3, 2013 at 6:48 am

Arnold, where's the tsunamis? You seem to have an ongoing animus toward workers whose salary is not at all excessive given the cost of living in the Bay Area.

What occupation are you or were you in, Arnold? Help us to understand how you can't brook the idea of workers making a wage that puts them at or slightly above the minimum needed to support a family of four in the region.

Do you think overtime shouldn't be compensated? And please tell us how management-supplied statistic of 70k wage translates into over 90k as you oozed out your info in the other post. In so doing, please note that working overtime, in any job, does not compute towards one's average wage. Also, please provide the frequent tsunami references you've graced us with over the past several years.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 3, 2013 at 7:41 am

Tom, I think it only fair to ask you he same questions that you are asking Arnold. What occupation are you or were you in? Apparently any facts that you don't agree with are unreliable regardless of the source. You doubt all quoted sources yet not once have I seen in any of your postings a verifiable source quoted. When your statements are questioned, you fall back on calling people various degrees of stupidity. Here's some reading material for you to help understand that unions like BART's hurt all of us. Web Link
Basically what this article identifies is that collective bargaining is a misguided labor policy
because it violates civil liberties and gives unions
excessive power to block needed reforms. Several large cities call such strikes illegal and unions and individual member can be fined and/or jailed. Those are the facts Tom.


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Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 3, 2013 at 7:56 am

I assume, Dave, you're the regular poster who typically has no arguments but instead uncritically relies upon right-wing opinion rags.

Here, rather than call you the idiot I believe you to be, I'll ask you instead: How exactly do you think that collective bargaining 'violates civil liberties'? Go ahead smart guy, have at it. Here's a crutch for you.... Any such argument would be expected to define 'civil liberties' before proceeding.

BTW, I've never held a job. Never had to. I inherited my millions from my Daddy, and these days I get a giggle out of seeing weak egos like yourself and Arnold and Kathleen (assuming you're not the same person) express victimization at the hands of greedy union workers making 70k in the Bay region.


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 3, 2013 at 8:15 am

Tom, if you would take the time to read the link I provided in my posting you would see that the statement is in the article attributed to the author of the article, Chris Edwards, Director of Tax Policy Studies, Cato Institute.


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Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 3, 2013 at 11:38 am

Like I said, Dave, right-wing opinion rag. Do you know the difference between opinion piece and a fact-based, analytical treatment of an issue? Didn't think so.


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Posted by Tom
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 3, 2013 at 1:26 pm

I repeat; Apparently any facts that you don't agree with are unreliable regardless of the source. You doubt all quoted sources yet not once have I seen in any of your postings a verifiable source quoted. When your statements are questioned, you fall back on calling people various degrees of stupidity. Have you provided any kind of verifiable sources for your statements? Or is just easier to call out insults to all others that disagree with your slated position?


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Posted by Dave
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 3, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Opps, I got excited and put in Tom's name rather than mine on the last posting. I would never imagine that Tom would have such reasonable statements attributed to him! My mistake.