Pittsburgh Loses Again

Pittsburgh Loses Again

Pittsburgh loses again, although this time it’s not an athletic contest. The City lost an arbitration award to the labor union representing Public Works employees. The grievance was over the awarding of overtime during the G-20 Summit held in the City in September 2009. The City has to pay a total of $50,000 in retribution to 62 laborers.

That the City lost is not a surprise. Public Works Director noted that he cannot recall the last time the City won an arbitration case. A union rep is sure that the City has won one, but was unable to name a specific case or how long ago it occurred.

And that in a nut shell is the problem with the City of Pittsburgh-it is being dominated by its unions. Whether in arbitration or at the negotiating table, the City cannot win. The real problem is that the ultimate losers are the taxpayers who are forced to pay more and more as a result.

The cost of government keeps rising even under the protection of Act 47, the municipal distress law, and there is not much City leaders can or are willing to do about it. And with each loss they sink deeper and deeper into a financial morass from which they may never recover.

For union members, Pittsburgh may indeed be "America’s most livable city" but not for taxpayers