Taxpayers Association Revokes Support of Grossmont-Cuyamaca College District Bond

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Press Release

Organization Vows to Inform East County Citizens of Breach of Trust

(San Diego) – The San Diego County Taxpayers Association’s Board of Directors today voted to revoke its support for the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District’s bond measure Prop V, citing the district’s breach of its pledge to of fair and open competition for the taxpayer-funded projects covered under the bond.

The GCCCD’s board of trustees voted on Tuesday to negotiate a Project Labor Agreement that would favor union contractors and severely limit competition for the bids, which SDCTA says will drive up costs to taxpayers. In doing so, the district reneged on the promise it made to gain SDCTA’s coveted endorsement when the measure was on the ballot in 2012.

“The GCCCD made this pledge to gain our endorsement, knowing that the Taxpayers Association’s stamp of approval carries enormous weight with voters,” said Theresa Andrews, SDCTA’s interim president and CEO. “We won’t allow them to trade on our reputation without calling this decision as a bait-and-switch. The GCCCD board has violated the trust of the citizens they represent.”

Andrews said the breach of the promise will be factored into any future request for  SDCTA’s endorsement on bond measures at Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District — or any other district that breaks promises made in order to gain the group’s support.

In 2012, when seeking SDCTA’s endorsement, the district passed a resolution promising to “promote fair and open competition for all district construction projects so that all contractors and workers, whether union or non-union, are treated equally in the bidding and awarding of District construction contracts.” SDCTA’s endorsement was featured prominently in the campaign for the measure.

In addition to revoking support, SDCTA will assist open-competition stakeholders in a public awareness campaign in East County to ensure taxpayers in the community are aware of the breach of their trust.

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Comments 2

  1. Good decision by SDCTA, though largely meaningless.

    I suggest that SDCTA and the business community also recruit, endorse and actively support GCCCD candidates running against those who voted for the PLA agreement, assuming the challengers pledge to revoke the agreement. This is a single issue campaign — lie and lose your office.

    I might add that running such anti-PLA candidates against the two gutless abstainers would be appropriate. There should be consequences.

    THAT move by SDCTA would send a much stronger message to the San Diego County politicians than a lame after-the-fact proclamation that means nothing.

    BTW, no surprise, but — unlike SDCTA — I opposed the bonds. Of course, once again, I was right. Sigh.

  2. “lie and lose your office.”

    Why limit this to elected officials? Why not make this the rule for all jobs? Of course, there would be quite a few job openings.

    In this case, however, no one lied. I can’t explain it any better than a commenter in the UT did so I will just quote him directly

    (http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/2015/nov/17/college-trustees-vote-for-construction-labor-pact/)

    “Here are the facts:

    1) The promise which the Board made in 2012 was in Section 3(j) of Board Resolution 13-004 (which put Prop. V on the ballot), which committed the District to ensuring “that all contractors and workers, whether union or non-union, are treated equally in the building and awarding of District contracts.”

    2) At the time the District made this promise, Public Contract Code Section 2500 was already the law in California. That section requires that any Project Labor Agreement entered into by a public entity “prohibit discrimination based on membership in a labor organization in hiring and dispatching workers for the project” and also requires that “the agreement permit all qualified contractors and subcontractors to bid for and be awarded work on the project without regard to whether they are otherwise parties to collective bargaining agreements.”

    Put simply, what the Prop. V resolution committed the District to doing is exactly what state law already required of PLAs negotiated with public agencies.

    If there were any remaining doubt, the text of the resolution which the Board adopted yesterday expressly said “the Board hereby directs staff to negotiate the terms of a Project Labor Agreement consistent with Public Contract Code Section 2500 and Section 3(j) of Board Resolution 13-004.”

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