Eric Christen is executive director of the Coalition for Fair Employment in Construction.
Remember the sudden burst of attention at the state Capitol in mid-August about reforming the California Environmental Quality Act?
During this special time of year, when the issue of temporal and transcendent morality is injected into the public square so significantly, there is an issue that has played out in San Diego more prominently than in any other city in the United States the past four years.
On Nov. 2 voters rejected San Diego Unified School District’s plea for more money. Proposition J needed 66 percent to pass but barely received 50 percent.
California is facing economic disaster.
Gaylord Entertainment last week pulled out of a proposed $1 billion hotel and convention center project on the Chula Vista Bayfront. Gone are 7,000 construction jobs, 2,000 permanent jobs, 200 acres of open park space, trails, a signature park for Chula Vista, the restoration of fragile wetlands and millions of dollars a year in revenue for a city and a region that could certainly have used them all.
For two years now our community has been witnessing firsthand the self-destructive tendencies of the modern union movement at work. The most public display of this has been their attacks on Gaylord Entertainment and Gaylord's planned $1 billion resort and convention center in Chula Vista. Using their allies and enablers in the "environmental movement" and in state bureaucracies like the California Coastal Commission, they have engaged in environmental blackmail, or as we refer to it, "greenmail." This is a tactic where unless a project is built using only union labor, as Gaylord has been told, the project will be attacked and delayed until such time as the owners see the light -- or pack their bags -- taking jobs and tax revenue with them.