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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

On the clock

An alert reader sends along this photo with a caption:

Ten workers, one manhole: streetcar update!

Taken at 5:14 pm today on SE Washington and Union, er... I mean MLK. iPhone foto, I apologize. I couldn't get two other guys in the pic, both on cells in the middle of the street. Topped only by a flagger gal that had her slow/stop sign upside down and looked ready for a cold and frosty.

The ribbon-cutting on this one is gonna be epic!!!

Comments (22)

Aw c'mon, thats everywhere, 10 guys, one shovel, and be thankful there wasn't a cute girl walking by, they all would be ogling her.

5:14pm... hmmm, does the union contract stipulate that they get overtime (after 5pm, you know), even if they have not worked 8 hours yet that day (nor 40 that week)?

Unions, they are out there protecting the abuse of average, everyday workers who otherwise would be taken advantage of big time. TRI-MET bus drivers almost did a slow-down today because their bosses are asking that they should pay a small tiny fraction of their health care costs. 100% paid for health care is a God given right for the bus drivers, right there next to free speech.

Those damn construction workers. They're the real problem with America, not the greedy bankers, corporate thugs and robber barons.

God forbid a full time employee has full health coverage. You should be thanking the unions for fighting so hard for decent wages, benefits and working conditions.

These don't look like city employees. Probably contractor employees working for one of the West Hills powers-that-be or their buddies.

The construction folks don't work for the city or TriMet - UNLESS they are city Water Bureau employees working to relocate the water lines.


Of course once this round of Portland Streetcar construction is done, I'm sure Sam Adams will be hiring them to do some remodeling work on his houses, while sliding in the expense somewhere buried in the Bureau of Sustainability and "Telling Everyone Else How to Commute While Allowing City Employees To Drive S.U.V.s And Park Free Downtown."

Larry: God forbid a full time employee has full health coverage. You should be thanking the unions for fighting so hard for decent wages, benefits and working conditions.
JK: Are you thanking the transit union for their $60,000/year drivers with an added 152% benefits for a total of around $120,000/yr for a bus/LRT driver?

How long do you think Trimet can provide these levels of pay AND continue to serve the public?


Looks like break time.

Like Erik said, they can't be City Workers. Our guys sleep in their trucks.

A bunch of guys standing around a hole in the street are either city workers, or contractor workers - hired by the city. You pay, either way.

Mister Tee, they definitely weren't city workers hired on Adams's watch. They weren't blogging about it.

There was a street paving job in front of my office earlier this summer. It was a City of Portland crew. Actually they were really efficient and got it done quickly. I saw this one woman standing around, sitting on some steps of another office, hiding in an alley smoking cigarettes, and basically doing nothing all day. I took a bunch of photos from my office window of her standing around that were time stamped. She didn’t do anything for the whole day. I later on asked one of the workers who she was. He shook his head in disgust and said she was the supervisor.

I think Tri-Met is a travesty, but how do you "almost" do something?

Just because someone gave a reporter "tip" does not mean that it was going to happen.

A few years back I was working as an inspector (not for a government agency) on the expansion of the bus square and waiting stations, etc. downtown. I got sent on one assignment where some workers were putting in steel for reinforcement for one of the bus shelters. As an aside here let me tell you, if you need a safe place to hide from flying whatever or maybe a hurricane, those shelters are anchored like ... well, I digress. So there are 3 guys working, I show up as one inspector, then the Tri-Met inspector shows up (he didn't know what he was suppose to be looking at), the city of Portland inspector shows up (he didn't know what he was looking at), a Tri-Met supervisor shows up, the engineer shows up and a foreman of the construction company shows up. Six guys watching and 3 guys working; worse of the six guys watching only one of us knew what we were suppose to be looking at (that was me).

Hey Larry, I work full time in healthcare and I pay 15% of my premium and 35% of my family's premium. I also found out that what I pay per paycheck for this benefit is going up 142% in 2011. So you and all the other entitled union thugs can just go pound sand as far as I am concerned.

Has anyone but me noticed those tracks are kinds crooked?

Pelep: Form a union and get a better contract. Your employer is probably raking in the cash (like many corporations) and until you and your co-workers do something about it you're going to continue to get a raw deal.

Don't blame unions because they have good contracts that provide middle class incomes for working hard. Join one and get one yourself.

Larry please - form a union. Why? Unions are the cause of our problems now. 100% healthcare, unmanageable and unfundable pensions, tenure for poor employees, pay scales out of whack with real world salaries. Whatever. Let me not forget how unions are hypocrites too. How about how OEA stood against its own support staff employees in a union dispute. Please. Healthcare isn't a right and at 100% funding it is breaking us.

Glad you took the picture. We now know what "stimulus" looks like.

Aw' come - on .....I would bet if someone where to take a camera into an office building, retail mall, or newsroom...they would witness the same sort of thing many times a day: Employees standing around the coffee machine, the water fountain, or gawking out the window. And don't try to tell me that it only happens outside in the street!!! Most of you angry folks feel that just because some folks work outside, when you are stuck working inside(your choice) that the folks outside are having a great-ol'time!!!! It takes a lot of energy (and eyes) to keep a look-out on you folks driving while you are on the phone, putting on makeup, texting, or taking pictures , etc... etc...

Taking a little break from that time-to-time is merritted. Besides , YOU don't know what their job entails and maybe they are having a Coporate Meeting!!!

NOT TO MENTION You fools driving right through the traffic control devices set up for these workers safety....BUT, I guess, In Your Mind....these workers are just-in-your way and are unimportant worker-ants!!!!

Driving a bus and ditch digging is not skilled labor. They make more than most electricians.

Q:How many guys/gals in orange vests does it take to remove a manhole cover?
A: Nine to spin it and one to run to VooDoo doughnuts for a snack for the crew.
Almost forgot the chick(supervisor)taking a smoke break behind the dumpster. That makes eleven.
My guess is probably fifteen total counting support staff in their trucks watching football or smoking some of the "good" stuff...., or both.
America at work.
Go Beaves.

Well If digging a ditch isn't skilled labor.....howz a-bouts digging a ditch when there are several utilities to dig around....da...electricity....da...gas linez....da telecommunications cables.....da...sewage line...da...on and da...on....da..on. Electricians are like doctors.....da...God Complex!!!!

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