Just hours before the Los Angeles Chargers franchise will make its first pick in the NFL Draft, labor dispute signs popped up in front of the Chargers team headquarters in San Diego.
Three large signs, each with the printed words, “Labor Dispute Coming Soon!” are on the sidewalk in front of Chargers Park on Murphy Canyon Road.
The people holding the signs are handing out flyers with the headline, “Shame on Dean A. Spanos.”
When asked by NBC7 what is the reason for the signs? Armando Nunez of the Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters called it a public awareness campaign to let the public know what was going on with the building of the Chargers new training facility in Costa Mesa.
Nunez contends that Chargers Chairman Dean Spanos hired a “contractor that the Southwest Carpenters have a dispute with.”
The Pacific Building Group is the name of the contractor that Nunez claims is not meeting area labor standards.
According to Nunez the Pacific Building Group does not pay area standards that are consistent to San Diego or Costa Mesa. Including not fully paying for the carpenter craft workers health benefits and pension.
“The way that translates is that the contractor takes advantage of the worker for higher profits,” said Nunez.
Nunez said the Carpenters Local 1506 has reached out to the Charger in hopes of coming to an agreement, but have not heard back from the organization.
NBC 7 also reached out to the Chargers for comment. We received the following the statement from Bill Johnston, the Chargers Director of Public Relations.
Statement from the Chargers:
We understand that the carpenters’ union has objections to the general contractor that we have hired in Costa Mesa because the union objects to some of the sub-contractors that the general contractor sometimes uses. None of these subcontractors, however, were used on our project in Costa Mesa.
In addition, we had no way of knowing that this was an issue for the union. This is the first time we are hearing of any of this. Had we known about the issue beforehand, we would have worked to address it. We have always sought and maintained excellent relationships with labor in San Diego and, now, in Los Angeles.
Finally, the carpentry portion of our Costa Mesa project is virtually finished. However, we are willing to engage in a dialogue with the carpenters’ union to address any concerns going forward, and we've reached out to the union to demonstrate a willingness to open lines of communication, but so far have not heard back.
The Los Angeles Chargers new training facility is located at 3333 Susan Street in Costa Mesa. The Chargers will continue to operate out of their San Diego facility through June, then transition to their new Orange County location.