"Megabucks" Bloomberg and his rich developer pals in N.Y.C. are trying to bust I.U.O.E. Local 14

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Jeff Gerber in Staten Island, New York

54 months ago

The ridiculous plan to weaken NYC crane licensing standards by allowing the introduction of inexperienced, out of state, non-union crane operators into our city was hatched by Bloomberg's buddy, Steven Spinola. Anyone who knows anything about Spinola, who is the president of the Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY), knows that he is a union-buster.

In order to increase the profits for the developers that his organization represents, Spinola wants the city to relax the rules for obtaining a license to operate a crane in New York City so contractors can bring in inexperienced, non-union crane operators who will work for less money than union crane operators. This may save the developers money, but it will drastically increase the likelihood of future crane accidents.

Those recent accidents in Manhattan, which resulted in the deaths of Wayne Bliedner and Donald Leo, two members of IUOE Local 14, were caused by faulty equipment/rigging, not by operator error. Spinola and his fellow union-busters knows this, but instead of questioning the business practices of the owner of those cranes, they decided to use these accidents as subterfuge to push for the weakening of the requirements to obtain a NYC Department of Buildings Hoist Machine Operator license, which will greatly weaken the crane operator's union by causing an influx of inexperienced non-union crane operators from out of state.

Spinola and his cohorts don't care about the extraordinary skill of union crane operators and Local 14's exemplary safety record. All they care about is the additional money they will make if they successfully bust the crane operator's union.

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Craniac in Prescott, Arizona

54 months ago

Your rant reminds me of a funny story. I hold NCCCO certs and have owned cranes for 33+ years, hired a number of operators during that time. Two guys, one of whom was (briefly) hired and the other not, were probably at or near the bottom of the heap when it came to performing the job at hand. Both were from- you guessed it- NYC, one had previously worked in Local 14. I'm not bashing anyone here; I just really don't see how the geographical region affects crane operation. The cranes are all from the same mfrs. and operate in a similar manner. Safety, wind currents, oversailing, etc. are potential issues in any city. Best of luck.

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Jeff Gerber in Staten Island, New York

54 months ago

Hey Craniac: My statement is not a "rant". The only people who would take it that way are union haters who think that it is perfectly alright for inexperienced, unskilled non-union crane operators to waltz into NYC and try to replace experienced, skilled union crane operators. You say that you are not "bashing" anyone, but you are. You are inferring that union crane operators from New York City cannot cut it in a small Arizona town with a population under 40,000 people. I find that VERY hard to believe, and I really don't believe that you are telling the truth. I hope that you make lots of money with your non-union crane business in your right to work state, but I'd really appreciate it if you and your ilk would keep out of my city!

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