Oceanside pol to Steinberg: Fix your own mess and leave us alone

March 22, 2013

jerrykerncouncilBy Chris Reed

Veteran Sacramento watchers are so used to Democratic state lawmakers contorting themselves to please unions that almost nothing comes as a surprise any more. It’s what they do. It’s a puppet/puppet master relationship. Some are so subservient they’ll even support unions if it means kids will die.

Nevertheless, I really I enjoyed the indignation of Oceanside Councilman Jerome Kern in his U-T San Diego op-ed over the out-of-left-field attempts by the Legislature to unconstitutionally interfere with charter cities:

“While the federal government and the state of California demonstrate that they are incapable of producing a balanced budget or reining in runaway spending, governments in California charter cities have taken the initiative and explored opportunities to cut costs for taxpayers and encourage economic growth and job creation in their communities. One of the most noticeable ways that charter cities work to reduce spending and increase revenue is to exempt themselves from paying costly state-mandated prevailing wage rates.

“This ability to control cost is now under attack by the California Legislature with the introduction of SB 7 by Senate President Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento. SB 7 would prohibit a charter city from receiving or using state funding for any construction project if the charter city elects not to pay the unrealistic state-determined wages on self-funded projects as well. This bill is a direct assault on charter cities and conflicts with the California Supreme Court’s decision in a case involving Vista where the court held that setting wage rates on locally funded projects is a municipal affair and the state has no jurisdiction on the internal affairs of the charter cities. …

“This measure would establish an alarming trend for the future. It would be granting the state the authority to micromanage charter city laws and policies through the tactic of withholding state funds as political leverage to force changes to charters and local ordinances. The out-of-control special interests that now rule the state Legislature would then have control of our cities as well.”

The least credible government efficiency expert imaginable

Kern makes the key point very well that Steinberg simply has no standing or credibility when it comes to trying to tell any other government how to run its affairs:

 “It is the height of hypocrisy that a state government that has repeatedly demonstrated failure to manage its own affairs (witness the revelation of multiple slush funds held by agencies that they oversee and the dumping of state prison inmates back on city streets) can dictate to cities how to manage their internal affairs.

“This is the same legislative body that has made almost a conscious effort to drive business out of the state. It is as if they have run out of targets to destroy in the private sector and are now turning their sights on the cities to see how many charter cities they can punish.”

What’s funny is that the analysis on the official state LegInfo.com site pretty strongly hints that SB 7 violates a clearly written ruling of the California Supreme Court.

But that doesn’t matter one whit to Steinberg, given the listed supporters of the measure:

AFL-CIO (Sponsor)

Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, AFL-CIO

California Chapters of the National Contractors Association

California Labor Federation

California Legislative Conference of the Plumbing, Heating and Piping Industry

California Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association

California State Council of Laborers

Carpet Linoleum & Soft Tile Workers Local Union No. 12

Cement Masons Local Union No. 500

Contra Costa Building and Construction Trades Council

District Council 16 Local Union 294

Fresno, Madera, Kings and Tulare Counties Building & Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO

Glaziers, Architectural Metal and Glass Workers Union, Local 718, of San Francisco

Imperial County Building Trades and 16 Affiliate Unions

International Brotherhood Electrical Workers

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union 234

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union No. 340

International Union of Painters and Allied Trades Local Union 376

Kern, Inyo and Mono Counties Building and Constructions Trades Council

Los Angeles/Orange Counties Building and Construction Trades Council

Northern California Carpenters Regional Council

Painters & Allied Trades District Council 36

Painters & Allied Trades Local # 3

Painters & Drywall Finishers Local 741 District Council 16

Painters & Drywall Finishers Local Union 913

Painters and Drywall Finishers Local 83

Plaster Tenders of Southern California Local Union 1414

Plumbers & Steamfitters Local Union # 230

Plumbers, Steamfitters and Refrigeration Fitters Local Union #467

San Diego County Building & Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO

San Mateo County Building & Construction Trades Council

Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades

Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, Transportation Workers Local Union 105

United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry Underground Utility/Landscape Local 355

United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States Local Union 114

Ventura County Plumbers and Pipefitters local # 484

Darrell Steinberg is no more likely to say no to this bunch then he is to someone holding a gun to the back of his head. The Senate president knows his place.


Write a comment
  1. loufca
    loufca 22 March, 2013, 07:09

    Leave it to the SF/Sacto Cabal to try and screw things up even more. Brown, Steinberg, Newsom, Pelosi, Boxer and Feinstein.

    What’s wrong with Southern California voters. We don’t have a voice any where, including a democratic one, in Sacto or DC. What a shame and an embarrassment. The voters only can blame themselves.

    Steinberg needs to go, and soon.

    Reply this comment
  2. Jay
    Jay 22 March, 2013, 07:22

    Steinberg would introduce a bill to make California a monarchy if the unions told him to do that.

    Reply this comment
  3. stevefromsacto
    stevefromsacto 22 March, 2013, 08:17

    We already had one. Schwarzenegger was king. It didn’t work so well.

    Reply this comment
  4. fish
    fish 22 March, 2013, 08:41

    I wonder if Steinberg used union labor to install the wrist sized hole? You know the one where the puppet master du jour slips in his hand prior to operating the “Darrel McCarthy” doll?

    Reply this comment
  5. Mitchseaman
    Mitchseaman 22 March, 2013, 08:49

    The bill is co-sponsored by Sen. Cannella. Does he also contort himself to please unions? Also, conclusive evidence confirms that weakening prevailing wage standards doesn’t save money; rather, it increases construction costs.

    Reply this comment
  6. Brown delta trout
    Brown delta trout 22 March, 2013, 08:57

    5) Unionization


    Reply this comment
  7. BobA
    BobA 22 March, 2013, 09:00


    Our votes no longer matter. The only thing our votes count for is expressing our approval or disapproval of what the ruling class in Sacramento is doing. When all is said and done, they don’t care what we think; they’re only interested in what we think so they can frame their totalitarian agenda in such a way as to render it more palatable to their subjects.

    We, the captive subjects of the ruling class of California, really don’t have a choice but to accept their dictates. Resistance is futile.

    Reply this comment
  8. Kirk Effinger
    Kirk Effinger 22 March, 2013, 10:44

    Weakening prevailing wages increases construction costs? I’d sure like to see the data on that whopper!

    Reply this comment
  9. double l
    double l 22 March, 2013, 12:02

    I would like to see how much these 36 unions have contributed to the political process and how much each legislator has received.

    Reply this comment

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