PLA with their heads

This week is the deadline for anti-union activists trying to qualify a local ballot measure to stop project-labor agreements on big public-works projects.

Defenders of PLAs say the agreements keep projects on time and on budget, and help ensure big public-works efforts (like arenas, light-rail lines, schools, etc.) keep jobs local and wages fair.

Opponents, namely nonunion construction companies, say such rules unfairly block nonunion contractors from bidding on public projects, and that hurts competition and taxpayers.

That’s why contractors had paid signature gatherers out in force last weekend, making a last push to collect enough signatures for the June ballot.

And labor activists were out trying make the gatherers’ jobs harder. On Sunday, they got petition workers booted from in front of the Save Mart Supermarket on Folsom Boulevard. Then it was off to the Walmart on Truxel Road where the pro-union folks handed out flyers and held signs saying, “This person will lie to you” with large arrows, strategically positioned to point at the signature gatherers. You know, kind of an “I’m with stupid” thing.

Local democratic activist Tamie Dramer told SN&R she saw one of the signature gatherers pull a switcheroo on one unsuspecting citizen, talking up a petition to legalize marijuana, then slipping the anti-union petition in at the last second.

The petitioner pled innocent. “Who are you going to believe? Me or the lady with the sign?” Hmm.

The boss petitioner, who would only give his name as “Bill,” said the anti-anti-PLA folks weren’t bothering him one bit. “Since they got here, we’re doing lots better.”

Hey, who are you going to believe?

Many of us have been wondering why the federal government decided a few months ago to crack down in a big way on dispensaries and collectives doing business under California’s medical-cannabis access law.

Well, according to a report from the Union of Medical Marijuana Patients, the federal government holds the patent on medical marijuana for particular uses and can assign exclusive rights to the use of medical marijuana to a single pharmaceutical company.

That sorta makes it look like the federal government isn’t really opposed to 1. using cannabis as a medical treatment for certain diseases and conditions, and 2. making a little money off said cannabis.

It seems that what the federal government is actually opposed to is small businesses and individuals being the ones to make a living providing medical cannabis to other people.