This will be certain to be a common theme for 2011 and beyond. Privatizing. I have been a union member on multiple occasions. They would rather go down with the ship than return gains they have collectively bargained for. Yes, some are offering concessions, however, it’s too little and too late. Anytime competitive bidding is involved, the union is going to lose. Case in point – from Mlive:
Board votes to outsource parking operations at Grand Rapids airport
Published: Wednesday, December 15, 2010, 9:50 AM Updated: Wednesday, December 15, 2010, 10:39 AM
Airport leaders unanimously selected a private firm to take over parking operations at Gerald R. Ford International Airport today, despite impassioned pleas by employees who will now have to reapply for their jobs and likely face pay and benefit cuts.
The vote to select Chicago-based Standard Parking to manage parking came after several parking employees that are now employed by Kent County spoke during the public comment period. The group questioned the fairness of the process and asked the board to delay the vote and give them more time to negotiate to keep their current jobs.
“You’ve been given the opportunity here to show the community, the taxpayers of the county that your employees are valuable to you,” said Crystal Floury, a parking attendant, who has been at the airport for 12 years. “That while you could have eliminated positions you chose instead to table the decision until a later time.”
Floury and other parking employees said they believed their union and airport administration had not given them enough opportunities to continue to negotiate for their job.
Finance Director Brian Picardat and airport leaders said the decision was difficult and based on a projected savings of $1.5 million over five years, even after a wage concession offered by current parking employees was factored in.
What: Gerald R. Ford International Airport leaders voted today to outsource all parking operations to a private firm, including the year-old $130 million four-story ramp.
Why: The move is expected to save the airport between $1.5 million to $1.9 million over five years.
Will parking rates go up? No. The company would be paid a set management fee out of parking revenues. The airport board would continue to set and control parking rates.
How much does it cost to park at the airport?
*$12 daily garage
*$10 daily long-term surface lots
*$9 daily economy lot
*18 daily valet
Standard Parking currently operates parking facilities at 60 airports including in Chicago, Atlanta, Kalamazoo, Traverse City and Flint.
Jack Ricchiuto, Standard Parking’s executive vice president of the airport division, said the company intends to allow all of the current 18 parking employees the opportunity to reapply for their jobs.
“ I can assure you that we will give you every opportunity to have employment,” Ricchiuto told the group.
Airport parking attendants and agents are currently represented by the UAW Local 2600, which represents hundreds of general Kent County employees. Wages have mostly been negotiated based on seniority, which has resulted in some airport parking employees making between $15 to $19 an hour based on years of service.