Stinks Like Measure B
- 10 Feb 2012
- Written by Jack Humphreville
LA WATCHDOG - (Editor’s Note: In light of the online Bloomberg news report on Tuesday, it seemed appropriate to revisit this Jack Humphreville LA Watchdog column from 2009 on the same subject … proving Jack is ahead of his time.)
Why is the City Council hell bent on approving the huge five year wage package for IBEW workers at the Department of Water and Power without adequate hearings and transparency?
Why do members of the IBEW need an 11.25% to 19.25% wage increase when, according to Councilman Bernard Parks, their compensation is 40% higher than comparable City workers. This IBEW LABOR PREMIUM adds at least 10% to our DWP water and power bills.
Why do members of the IBEW need a pay raise when comparable City workers are taking a haircut because of furloughs and additional pension contributions to help fund a portion of the Early Retirement Incentive Plan?
What is the source of cash to fund these wage hikes? 100% of the recent Rate Increases were promised for infrastructure maintenance and improvement so we will have fewer water main blowouts and power blackouts.
Why do members of the IBEW need a pay raise when the DWP Retirement Plan is underfunded by billions?
Why was this wage increase negotiated in secret? Even David Zahniser of The Los Angeles Times, the reporter who unearthed the devastating cover-up memo regarding the “extremely risky” Measure B, was unable to unearth the documents!
Why did the DWP Board of Commissioners and the City Council call Special Meetings on one day’s notice for December 1 and December 8 when the pay raise package was agreed to on November 18?
Why? Very simple! IBEW Boss D’Arcy is the largest campaign contributor to the Antonio Villaraigosa and Wendy Greuel. Boss D’Arcy has directed millions to political candidates and causes, including to Measure B and Christine Essel, the recently defeated candidate for Council District 2.
This is the same Boss D’Arcy that recently sued the City’s Ethics Commission to eliminate the caps on campaign contributions so he could buy the recent Council District 2 race.
This is the same Boss D’Arcy who muscled Measure B onto the ballot in three short weeks which would have resulted in Ratepayers being clobbered with billions EXTRA in rates over and above the already high cost of solar photovoltaic power.
This is the same Boss D’Arcy who is behind the Solar Scam where the DWP and IBEW control the construction and installation of the 400 megawatts of In Basin Solar Power envisioned by Measure B by eliminating competitive bidding.
Not only does this Solar Scam make a mockery of the voters’ rejection of Measure B, it will cost Ratepayers billions EXTRA, over and above the already high cost of solar voltaic power. This IBEW SOLAR PREMIUM will increase power rates by 10% to 15% over and above high solar rates.
This is the same Boss D’Arcy who extorted this “deal” by making a one-time, non negotiable demand that the DWP amend the existing agreement a year in advance, recognizing that the City is facing over $3 billion in deficits over the next four years.
This is the same Boss D’Arcy who makes the preposterous and insulting claim that this “deal” saves Ratepayers $330 million?
Despite the lack of hearings and inadequate and untimely disclosure (unlike Billy the Elephant), our City Council is scheduled to vote on this extraordinary wage package on Friday, December 11.
Tell the City Council that this ‘deal” STINKS, just like Measure B. Tell the City Council NO.
(Jack Humphreville is the President of the DWP Advocacy Committee and the Ratepayer Advocate for the Greater Wilshire Neighborhood Council. Humphreville is the publisher of the Recycler -- www.recycler.com . He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org) ◘
Tags: IBEW, DWP, Retirement Plan, Boss D’Arcy, Measure B, Solar Scam
Vol 7 Issue 101
Pub: Dec 11, 2009
Vol 10 Issue 12
Pub: Feb 10, 2012