California’s Charter Cities Battle the State Legislature: Political Columnist Dan Walters Ties Together Project Labor Agreements, Prevailing Wage, and Public Employee Pension Reform

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ATTENTION: See my latest, updated, comprehensive compilation of news coverage concerning the July 2, 2012 California Supreme Court decision in State Building and Construction Trades Council of California v. City of Vista upholding the right of charter cities to establish their own policies concerning government-mandated construction wage rates here.


It’s hard to cajole overworked newspaper reporters to research and write about government-mandated construction wage rates (“prevailing wage”) and Project Labor Agreements, and it’s hard to get editors to see value in covering these issues for their readership. The state and local labor issues monitored and reported by the Dayton Public Policy Institute cost a lot of money for California taxpayers, but these issues are also relatively difficult to understand and fairly technical and arcane in nature.

That’s why I was thrilled this morning to see the excellent column from respected Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Walters summarizing the current strained relationship between the California State Legislature and California’s 121 charter cities. He manages to tie together Project Labor Agreements, state-mandated construction wage rates (“prevailing wage”), and public employee pension reform in the context of what cities can do to assert their local home rule authority through charters.

Newspapers throughout the state of California publish Dan Walters’ columns.

Dan Walters: City-State Relations Take a Turn – Sacramento Bee (columnist) – July 9, 2012

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