Flying under the radar a bit here locally was a Proposition on the Chula Vista (South Bay) city ballot that would've banned that city from requiring union-only deals on municipal construction projects. Though the unions spent heavily against the proposition, it passed handily, 56 to 43 percent.
The citizens of Chula Vista remember well the Gaylord Industries debacle of just a couple of years ago, where Chula Vista's long-dormant waterfront was denied a face lift via a hotel and retail complex because the unions demanded 100% union representation on the construction project. Gaylord, as the developer, realized this would create an unsustainable cost burden upon them and attempted to negotiate.
The unions dug in their heels and refused to listen to anything other than an all or all deal. In three-way negotiations involving also the city, Gaylord finally washed their hands of the deal and the bay front acreage in Chula Vista still lies dormant and hundreds if not thousands of good-paying (many of them potentially union) construction jobs in a recessionary environment go unrealized.
In other totally related news, San Diego city councilman, Carl DeMaio, delivered 138,000 signatures on Monday in order to get a managed competition measure on the ballot. He, of course, was opposed by unions along the way as the increasingly irrelevant unions display their thuggery in increasingly bizarre ways. B-Daddy has the goods here.
Beating unions and particularly the completely unneeded public employee unions and their unsustainable pensions back into the box are central to getting control of state and local budgets. The word is out - people, like the good people of Chula Vista and San Diego have figured this out. It's time for the battle to be joined.