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Union Not Happy About Eagle Project

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I never said that unions have not overstepped their bounds and insisted on more than they should get. In the past, business held all the cards because they had the jobs. Do it for 15 cents an hour or we will give it to the guy standing in line behind you. This was great for the few people at the top, especially if they could manage to create a monopoly. The got wealthier and wealthier as the people who worked for them worked 12 and 14 hour days, 7 days a week and still didn't make enough to keep up. If they got sick, they were just out of luck and their job went to the next warm body. Organized labor helped put an end to poor treatment of workers. The employer/employee relationship should be sybiotic, but sometimes swings too far in one direction or the other. Face it, not everyone can be the top dog and all the little dogs just want their piece of the pie too. Unions asked for too much and business is moving elsewhere to continue making the profit margins they are accustomed to.


My main point is that we would not have the standard of living and benefits we currently enjoy without the unions paving the way for everyone else. the lesser point I didn't make is that there is plenty of blame to go around between business and unions due to their often adversarial role instead of a sybiotic relationship..

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I'm not the "super picky, stuck on details " kinda guy, but.......


"Just imagine IF there was no union involved. ABC Trail Construction inc. had signed a contract with the city to build that trail. Then the local trail association volunteered to build it. So the city told ABC to take a hike. ABC would have the city in court so fast you heads would spin."


That's alot of "IF".



Just imagine if the city had no plans whatsoever of building a trail. What if no contracts were signed, written or even thought of. Imagine if nobody was contacted, consulted or even had the job mentioned to them. Imagine if nobody.....not one single citizen even ever thought about making a trail. Until a Scout came up with the idea.

OH WAIT! That is what happened, we don't have to imagine.


Nobody lost work, wages or had a job taken away from them. The city didn't circumvent paying workers to do a job as the city never had any idea whatsoever about the trail until the scout brought up the idea of creating one for a scout project!


Like I said, I'm not a super stick to all minor details kind of guy, but we can "imagine" and "what if" all day long!


What if the scout in question was actually a sexual predator who's covert motive was to build a trail to attack women joggers? Oh the horror of it all: The city not only enabled the future rapist/killer...they gave him their blessings and screwed over union guys at the same time! Somebody call FOX news ASAP!


Somebody should go to jail as this is obviously a conspiracy!

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"...165-mile Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor. He noticed there were a few missing connections to the trail in Kimmets Lock Park, which is on the Lehigh River near Dauphin Street"


Now, this sounds like a National (read federal) Parks thing to me the more I think about it. This may be outside the city and unions area of authority.


Abel, I agree that there is not enough info to make a sound and educated decision on.


But truth be known, The scout might actually be the nephew of the union rep and was asked / offered the job in a ploy for the union guys to get attention and flex their muscle.


But again,

1) was the city ever gonna clear the trial?


2)Would the union guys have been asked or expected to clear it if the scout hadn't volunteered?


If the answer is no to either of those questions, the Union has more than over stepped their bounds.


If the answer is yes, then it's an issue between the city and the Union and not the scout who actually went through the proper channels and followed protocal and sought permission and blessings from the city.


For the Union to talk to or pursue any scouts whatsoever would be akin to strong arming, rackateering , and MAFIA style tactics!

The Unuion has no buisness taking issue with the scout, who so far might be the only guy to follow procedure here.


What is the union gonna do, ask the scout to pay the union employees what they think is a fair wage for services that "might" have been lost?(This message has been edited by scoutfish)(This message has been edited by scoutfish)

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You make plenty of moot points that never happened scoutfish. I was only responding to what information has been provided by the initial author. It is my understanding that the union feels that it was their job to make trails. I would love to have all the details, but I don't so I am only remarking on what information I have.


Again, if the making and maintaining of city trails is part of someone's job description, then the project should not have been approved in the first place. That seems to be the point of contention.


Super picky and stuck on minor details? I disagree. As a member of a council advancement committee I need to state all that is required of a Scout is to do the requirements, no more and no less. Thats a pretty simple policy.


If a Scouts project would go against one of the BSAs limitations criteria, it should not have been approved in the first place.


I dont make these policies; they come from national. If you dont agree with national advancement policies and procedures, feel free to contact the national advancement task force.


Its the details that will get you every time.


Attention to detail. Thats what I learned long ago in the military. It goes along with the Scout motto of being prepared.



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Come on..I make moot points based on stuff that didn;'t happen?


IE: "Just imagine if there was no union involved. ABC Trail Construction inc. had signed a contract with the city to build that trail. Then the local trail association volunteered to build it. So the city told ABC to take a hike. ABC would have the city in court so fast you heads would spin."

That was me qouting somebody else. My argument was intended to be as moot as the original comments on purpose!

The only thing I mention your name about was the agreement that there is not enough details. Know what I mean? I was agreeing with you. As fat ss picky to deytails, too many are arguing the importance of wether unions are good are bad, when the real issue is about wether a city broke a rule or if the boy scout erred. Not wether unions are favorable or not.

If we went into "super picky" detail, we could talk about why unions demanded GM to pay employees $65 an hour to stay home. Why unions sue companies when the employees themselves don't want to be union and vote to not be union.

Why do unions just automatically asume that if i don't want to be union, it's because I was coerced..yet if I'm not union, the union will threaten anybody and everybody who even considers hiring me.


Way back when, unions were the life blood of protecting workers.

Today MOST unuions are just rackets that demand money for able bodied people to be able to work. Basically, it's a club where you have to pay a handful of people to be able to do a job that you could already do with protection from the federal labor laws, depart,ment of labor, employment security commision and Department of revenue.


Just like insurance companies that charge a membership fee in order to be able to buy their insurance?


Are you kidding me? I have to pay you money in order to pay you money? I don;t think so!


But again, I AGREE with your statement about not enough info!

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This is the problem sometimes with topics in this forum, people try to look behind the facts presented and come up with other issues. I probably did it a few times myself in my previous incarnations in this forum. But in this case, I don't think it gets us anywhere to debate whether the project is a proper project or was properly approved. The fact is, it was approved, and by definition some authorized representative of the city had to approve it. The question presented, as I understood it, was, does the municipal employees union that has lost 39 members to layoffs, have a legitimate complaint about an Eagle candidate and his volunteers doing work that might otherwise have been done by the laid-off workers. My guess is that the union would not succeed with a grievance in this situation, but that is a legal issue. I can see their perspective, up to a point, and I don't really blame the union for bringing up the issue. They do not want a situation where the city is getting volunteers to do a substantial amount of the work that the laid-off workers would have done. On the other hand the position that "there's to be no volunteers," emphasis on the word "no", is a little extreme. The people of the city also have some right to volunteer to help their city, whether it's an Eagle Scout or someone else. If business was booming and there had been no layoffs of city workers, it wouldn't even be an issue. So I guess what I am saying is, there should be a reasonable balancing of the interests, but I think that having a Life Scout and his volunteers create a trail is reasonable. Two Life Scouts and two trails might also be reasonable. But there is a line somewhere, and I don't know where it is.

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Hey fish, When I was writing my reponse to you, I was responding to your 3:02 post. I didn't realize you had posted another response at 3:12. I was in the middle of writing my reply. I didn't get your additional details from the 3:12 post until just now.


Happy Scouting!!!

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The truly sad thing is that now that the trail is built, it will likely become overgrown and useless left to the maintenance of whichever government entity might be responsible. I cannot count how many Eagle projects have gone to pot, or even been dismantled because no one bothered to maintain them once they were done. Also have seen stupidity reign where approvals were gotten from one branch of government and then someone else, from an indirectly related agency said it was illegal or not to certain specs. Then they razed it, or threatened to fine someone. Reality is that many things we cherish as outdoor people would never be available if volunteers were not making it happen. Too many restrictions, regulations, and labor issues; and of course, never enough money for things such as this.

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National Heritage Corridors are not maintained by the US Park Service - they are only designated by the National Park Service as National Heritage Corridors, which gives the counties, states, cities and private entities that ow land the corridor runs through access to advice from the National Park Service. National Heritage Corridors are usually created through a large corridor of land along a river.


It sounds as if the Union is sending a shot over the bow of the City, making sure the City understands that they aren't to try to replace the laid off workers with volunteers. Their investigation would probably have been limited to a question of whether the city had planned this work and found someone to do the work for free, or whether it was truly the Scout's idea and the City never had any intention of creating new trail connections in the area. If the City had the intention of creating new trail connections - perhaps in some master planning document, the Union might very well have a legitimate grievance that the City just got work done for free that otherwise would have been done by employees. If the City never had the intention of creating the trail connections, then the idea was solely the Scout's. It may be a question of did the Scout approach the City with an idea in hand, or did he approach the City with a desire and was handed a list of projects he could do. If the latter, that would likely be a problem for the City because they could be said to be replacing employees with volunteers. I'm sure that's where the "no volunteer" warning comes from. If the City has always used city workers to plant flower beds, they will still have to continue to use city workers to plant the flower beds - especially if that's one of the tasks spelled out in the union contract - the union could argue that the city is using volunteers to bust the union. Frankly, if a city has to lay off workers, it shouldn't be planting flower beds at all, or setting up holiday lights - if they've got to cut expenses, they should be cutting those kind of extra expenses as well.

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The city had signed a contract with the union and in it agreed to what kind of work it covered and if there was a dispute there is a grievance process. If you where a real estate agent and had a listing (a contract) to sell a house and while your listing was in force, the seller sells to friend and refuses to pay your commission, youd sue him because your listing agreement says that if the house sells while the listing is in force then you own so much commission. The contract between the city and a union is no different except that this contract has a process (grievance) to find out if the contract had been violated and to enforce the contract if it had been. In this case city employees are going through the process that the city agreed to, to see if the contract has been violated. It is not a minor issue, peoples lives and incomes are at stake. If the wording of the contract that was agreed by the city and employees (union) says that they should be paid for that work then they will get paid, now even if the scouts did all the work.

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Abel, it's all good! Same thing happens here. Or I misunderstand what somebody commented on, and I bust them for agreeing with me..or worst case, I call out commenter "A" for something commenter "B: said! That's the best.then you have to back track, appologize and retract what you said to somebody who didn't say anything to start with!


Let's not even talk about how one single misplaced or forgotten apostrophie can change the entire meaning of a word or comment! :o

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This is a truely tough spot to be in:

This is a case where everybody sure had better have had all the details written in the contracts. Yet, as is the case most of the time, unless you have a contract for a determined amout of time ( say like a month, year or particular weekend), it's pretty much impossible to plan ahead and foresee all potential issues that could arise.


I live in a rural ditrict. No city limits. but i live a half mile from one town, and 3 miles from the other. Yep!Sandwiched right in the middle. ( Inerestingly enough, I have a Surf City fire/rescue/ building inspection district - a Holly Ridge phone exchange, and a Hampstead ( over 12 miles away) mailing address! )

One town has a population of about 900. The other has a seasonal population of 600/3,000

Some years, the town cannot afford the expense of a "holiday tree" as the call it now, so a group of citizens gets together and donates a tree, plants it (or whatever they do to stick it in place) and even goes out and buys the decorations.

The town didn't ask them too, but the citizens of the community rallied together to continue the tradition. They did it with the town's approval.

So here's the question: Did the town do it's employess wrong by letting the volunteers erect and decorate the tree?

The merits of your decision should be based on

A0 The town would not have had a tree if it had to be paid for as the budget wouldn't allow it.

B) The town is comprised of it's citizens who ultimately, the town serves.

C) Either way you look at it, the union employees guys would not have set up the tree. They did not lose out.


But as a counter point, You do have to find out if the town had a pre planning session the previous summer and planned the "woe is us" speech about not affording a tree in attemps to get volunteers step up.


Now in the scouts case, I do not thin the city tried to get free services by using the scout, nor did it cheat the union guys.

Matter of fact, It is my beliefe that had the scout not volunteers to do this project, there would still be no path, no thought of a path, and the biggets issue right now would be wether to sue the town over Christmas decorations!



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Here's a thought: if the only reason a bunch of 15-year-old Boy Scouts can't take over your job is because of union work rules, maybe it's time to consider a career change.


Thought #2: it's probably a good thing to judge an Eagle project based on the project proposal not a newspaper article, written by a reporter who probably knows nothing about Eagle project, when the article isn't really about Eagle projects in the first place.


And a question: where did we get the idea that the ban on "routine service" means an Eagle project must be unique and original. Gee, that kind of limits projects to brain transplants and constructing cold fusion reactors. I've never seen a Eagle project that isn't a job or service normally rendered by SOMEONE.


The intent of that clause is clearly that project needs to meet some need which is not currently being met. Yard work is probably the best example of a routine labor. Painting may or may not be routine labor. If you're merely touching up around a skating rink, no; but locally I've seen a very good Eagle project of repainting a battered womens' shelter.


The standard is whether or not a Scout can demonstrate leadership in the course of the work. Even if the underlying work is fairly routine labor, if the scope of the work adds the necessary planning, recruitment, organization, funding, motivation and managment skills for the Scout to demonstrate his leadership, it should be acceptable.



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Here's it in a nutshell.


Did the Eagle project replace work that was planned for and funded by the city, thus putting people out of work and unable to feed their families?


Or, was the project in addition to what the city was willing and able to pay for such work, thus not putting people out of work and unable to feed their families?


I think it was the latter. But if it was the former, the city has got some splaining to do. If it was the latter, the union should just shut up.

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