What Fresh Hell Is This?

December 31, 2009

Lil Lord Luke Does Last Minute Veto of Prevailing Wage

Longtime readers know that I normally refer to Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl as "Lil Mayor Luke," but tonight he's Lil Lord Luke. From the Post-Gazette:
In a New Year's Eve surprise, Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl this afternoon vetoed prevailing wage legislation passed unanimously by city council 10 days ago. Council President Doug Shields called a special 6:30 p.m. council meeting in an effort to override the veto, but fell one vote short of the needed six.

Coming at the end of council's two-year session, the timing of the veto was apparently meant to leave council no chance to vote to override. The complex legislation to guarantee hotel, cafeteria and building maintenance workers at future city-subsidized development sites wages equal to the average of their peers citywide would have to be reintroduced next year, under a new council.
Bob Mayo tweeted:

Councilor Bill Peduto tweeted the following:

(For an explanation as to why some councilors betrayed their earlier vote, see Potter's blog on the race for Council presidency here.)

I'll just say here what I tweeted earlier:

This is the kind of move you'd expect from someone who deliberately waited until 3 weeks *after* an election to announce his separation.


Long Live the King.

(Can't get rid of 2009 -- or this whole fakakta decade -- soon enough.)


EdHeath said...

When Pat Dowd was first running, he talked about the debt obligations facing Pittsburgh, and about making government more transparent. I guess Dowd has done some things about the PWSA maybe, but mostly I can't think of anything Dowd has done in those areas. Mostly Dowd (after doing pretty good at the beginning of that LED billboard thing) has maneuvered and taken positions in Council. Even at this emergency Council meeting Dowd was complaining about the behavior of Council rather than the behavior of the Mayor (at least to the press). While he might be technically (or legally) correct, the consequences of his actions means the City as a whole lost. That means more to me than being technically right.

Matt H said...

What a shameful move by the Mayor.

Conservative Mountaineer said...

Matt H..

Priceless and ironic coming from someone who photocopied documents and forwarded those photocopies to a sensationlist talk-show person ("This is significant!" Marty Griffin) without first going through appropriate internal channels. Now, that was shameful.

The 'Lil Boy Mayor is WAY over his head.. he is a punk.. he is immature.. but, what he did was legal.

Oh, and you Pittsburgh residents have to live with him!

Finally, here's what will happen.
1. Council will pass similar, if not the same, legislation in 2010.
2. Lukey will (may) veto.
3. Council will (most likely) override.

4. Development will either halt or slow down, and,
5. The law will be contested by some innocent tenant (say, a restaurant or theatre) of a development 'funded' by the City that doesn't want to pay their cleaning staff Union pay, and
6. The law will be thrown out.

If I were a developer or advising a developer, I'd strongly insist upon an indemnification provision in any development agreement of some sort.

If I were to be a tenant or advising a potential tenant, I'd STRONGLY insist upon an indemnification provision in any lease agreement.