Del Mar seeking labor council’s support of fairgrounds purchase

By Marlena Chavira-Medford

Staff Writer

Del Mar is in talks with the San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council in hopes of gaining its support for the potential purchase of the fairgrounds and racetrack.

Councilman Mark Filanc, who is a member of the subcommittee dealing with the fairgrounds negotiations, said gaining public support from the labor council could carry a lot of critical weight at the capitol.

“[The labor council is] willing to step out and help us, and this is a big support going forward in this project because they definitely have the ear of the governor and over half of the legislature up in Sacramento,” he told Del Mar City Council during its March 7 meeting. “They’re offering us full support, which will go a long way in getting us where we want to be with regard to Sacramento and getting legislation passed.”

Before it can give that full support, however, the labor council is asking that a couple of items be guaranteed.

Though Del Mar’s resolution of intention states that it plans to honor all labor agreements, the labor council is asking that four points be spelled out: That Senate Bill 1 (SB1), which would authorize Del Mar to buy the fairgrounds, include language stating that prevailing wages would be honored, and that anything currently subject to the state’s prevailing wage law remain that way; That SB1 include language stating that union rights will be upheld, and that the fairgrounds will retain its public employee status, seniority and bumping rights, and all coverage by all provisions of collective bargaining agreements; That the city would adopt worker retention, labor peace and labor harmony principles; And that convention, trade show and exhibit work agreements be honored.

After discussing it, the city council agreed it was in favor of these principals and wanted to move forward with gaining the labor council’s formal support. City staff will now determine what is the best way to satisfy the labor council’s request — such as drafting a formal resolution, or letter — and then return to council with that for approval.


Labor organizations letters of support for fairgrounds purchase

The Jockey’s Guild and The California Teamsters Public Affairs Council have written letters of support for Del Mar’s proposed purchase of the fairgrounds and racetrack. The letters from these labor organizations urge the passing of SB1 to preserve the future of thoroughbred racing in California, and to protect the union jobs associated with the property.

Councilman Carl Hilliard back in fairgrounds negotiations

In past weeks Del Mar councilman Carl Hilliard had been recusing himself from all talks related to the city’s proposed purchase of the fairgrounds and racetrack after there were concerns voised about him having a conflict of interest because he is a horseman. Though the city attorney could find no conflict of interest, Hilliard hired his own attorney to further review the issue. Based on that, it was determined that Hilliard has no conflict of interest and he will therefore be participating once again in fairgrounds negotiations.

“There was never any doubt about it at all, but because of the serious allegations that were made, it had to be faced and thoroughly investigated,” Hilliard said. “There was never a shadow of a question about it, so I’m happy to report that little dark cloud has passed.”

Related posts:

  1. Del Mar Councilman Carl Hilliard steps back from fairgrounds negotiations
  2. Del Mar Council OKs Resolution to Buy Fairgrounds
  3. Del Mar City Council may buy Fairgrounds
  4. Del Mar seeks Solana Beach’s support for fairgrounds purchase
  5. Del Mar City Council to hold special meeting on proposed fairgrounds purchase

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Posted by Karen Billing on Mar 8, 2011. Filed under Del Mar, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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