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Pennsylvania Firefighters to make minimum wage

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Just heard on the news that the mayor in one Pennsylvania community just cut all municipal workers down to minimum wage. This includes firefighters and police officers. He said he had no other choice. We employ people to step in and help during trouble, but we don't want to reward them for risking their lives.


Words escape me

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Looks like the Unions are stepping in. Don't know what I think about Unions but maybe this is more what they were meant for than......?


If this needs moved to the Edge or something, go ahead.

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Yep, been following this, another fairly large city is going bankrupt . Sign of the times? I guess their unemployment checks will be larger ?

I feel badly for those affected since services are definitely affected but it seems the harshness of the event affects has to go through its paces before things get straightened out and municipalities can manage adjustments.


Pretty much if any of us live in such situations it is up to us now, private citizens to cover our own spots.

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If I'm not mistaken, all of the city employees have been reduced to minimum wage. Scranton isn't that far from my area. In fact, I can get there in less than an hour and a half. We pass it on our way to Philadelphia. It is another old rust belt city that no longer has a strong manufacturing base.


That being said, the act of reducing everyone to such a small paycheck is irresponsible. The employees would have been better off if they had been laid off or had their work week shortened. Then, at least unemployment could have helped them to get by. Since they are working full work weeks, they are ineligible. I think that the Scranton administators did this to draw attention to their city. There is no other explanation. :shakinghead:


I understand the fact that there is no money in the city coffers to pay everyone a regular salary, but the city contracted to pay X amount of dollars to their employees and now they are failing to do so. If an employee walks off the job, unemployment can refuse to pay them due to job abandonment issues. So many people live paycheck to paycheck as it is. We all know that it isn't the best way to live, but they do so for many reasons. Because they have jobs, these people may be ineligible for any assistance, etc... None of us are guaranteed a paycheck, but this was done deliberately to these employees. Presumably, the administrators have deeper pockets and aren't in danger of defaulting on their obligations. If Scranton is anything like my city, most of the politicians are attorneys that work in law offices by day and moonlight as elected officials in their spare time. They won't be missing any meals!



Edited to add an article:



Edited by themartianchick
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This is awful ! No incentive to keep working at a high stress job for minimum wage. They may as well work at Walmart or McDonalds or something for the same pay. This is just wrong !! You cannot live on minimum wage.


I know money is tight everyplace. I don't think there is going to be enough unemployment money to go around. Better keep stocking things here.

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The fire cheif said that the teenager at the local pizza joint would be making more than his fire rescue workers.


Yup, no unemployment unless they are laid off. Think they are all gonna stay? I doubt it. Of course, try finding a job when your "over qualified". Something smells of pooey :smiley_shitfan:


Definately gonna tell our friends in the fire and police that we sure appreciate them. I hope the citizens of those communities will stand up and say something. I feel real bad for everyone affected there, but most especially for these folks as they really do risk their lives.

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what is interesting is there is Democrat mayor and a Democrat city council. The mayor chose this step because the city council wouldn't raise taxes.


Bottom line - if there is no money to pay them . . . then there is no money to pay them. How much of the problem is due to the unions demanding ridiculous compensations that are far above the public sector?


Of course - it isn't as exciting to say "mayor's typist on minimum wage". Always has to be police, teachers or firefighters. As if they somehow are more righteous than their neighbors.


This is the logical consequence of decades of irresponsible behavior. Is anyone surprised? Remember these people were all elected by a majority. And I bet they had overwhelming support from those same city workers who are now enjoying the consequences of electing tax and spend liberals.

Edited by Gunplumber
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Of course - it isn't as exciting to say "mayor's typist on minimum wage". Always has to be police, teachers or firefighters. As if they somehow are more righteous than their neighbors.



That wasn't quite my point. (and you probably were not referring to my comment ) Do I feel bad for the typist; sure, but I doubt he is at as much risk for bodily harm as the fire and police. So yeah I think they should be paid more weighing the risk. I think military should be paid more than they are too. If I were socialist I would probably think everyone should be paid the same, regardless of experience, education, risk, talent, etc.


Am I completely surprised. Not in light of where this country is headed. Truly my little world has not been rocked much by the economy or anything else. I've just been sitting back watching most of what is going on, and changing my habits according to what I'm seeing/hearing.


Also, from what was reported last night there wasn't even the money to pay them even minimum wage, but now they've managed to borrow some. Yup that's gonna help. How so? It still floors me that anyone sees any wisdom in borrowing money when there is no promise of being able to pay it back.

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nah - I wasn't referring to anyone in particular, just the irony of having a Demo city counsel turning down the Demo mayor's demand for higher taxes.


Firefighters are paid what they are worth or they wouldn't take the job. Add unions to it and the free market no longer applies.


Fire them all and hire new non-union firefighters eager to do the work for half the pay. That would be a good start. I wonder if the mayor has taken a corresponding pay cut? That would be the honorable thing to do. Maybe he has.


It is an interesting side note that someone brought up about not being able to collect unemployment insurance unless they are laid off. That is something that should be investigated more deeply - was it by design or an unintended consequence?


Now unemployment INSURANCE is another issue. It should have a beginning and an end. After 90 days in my opinion it is merely tax-payer funded welfare for those who must not be that employable anyway.

Edited by Gunplumber
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You can't have more money going out than you have coming in. Municipalities are spending more than they have coming in. The unions won't renegotiate. I think we'll be seeing more of this. It's usually a public stunt to be able to raise taxes.


If those jobs were in the private sector, and a company was bleeding that much money, they'd close up.

You should see some of the crap that gets pulled when the teachers contracts are up in school districts in PA. My brother didn't start his senior year of high school until nearly the end of Oct., then had to go to school over Christmas vacation and didn't graduate until almost July because of a teacher's strike. in PA, the unions representing people whose paycheck comes from my tax dollars need to accept that these are tough times. Our taxes keep going up to pay for union contracts and union pensions for government employees. A year or 2 ago, the teachers in my school district went on strike the maximum number of days allowed by law. The biggest fight was over a increase in their healthcare costs. They had no monthly premium. The district wanted the teachers to pay a $10/month per individual or $20 month per family monthly premium. That was the biggest reason for the strike. I don't have much sympathy when our premium is over $500/month.


Then there's union pensions. There's alot of gov't (union) jobs in PA with very cushy pensions. We know a guy who was a PAT bus driver in Pittsburgh for 20 years and then retired with a full pension. They're union. . PAT is Port Authortiy Transportation (the city of Pittsburgh's government public transit). I'll rant about how my driver's license fees and vehicle registration fees keep going up and the $ goes to the Port Authority --raises, pensions, ect-- and fares don't go up, and they don't strike, for another day.

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The point of slashing the public service officers salaries, is to create a public uproar to justify tax increases and such. The higher-ups absolutely will not slash their own wages. How about start at the very top reduce those wages, then, by the time they get to the PSO's they would probably have a balanced budget?


Nevermind.. :behindsofa:

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Mayor and city council's pay also cut to minimum wage.


They owe money.


They can't raise the amount they owe, can't even come close.


Nobody will lend them money.


There are, somewhere in the background, decades of greed, corruption, and bad decisions driving this.


Personally, I find it to be hilarious.


What's the old analogy? Something about chickens and roosting IIRC ..................




BTW - Scranton only has a population of 76,000. Budget for 2011 was 75 mil, budget for 2012 was 85 mil. cops accounted for 28% of that ................... so 25mil and change for a police dept. in a "city" of only 76,000 ..............


I'm sure the UNIONS, aka collectivist bloodsucking swine, will have an answer.

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  • 1 month later...

I told my 16 yr old about this today when he was moaning about not having hours to work at McDonalds (because he called off almost a whole week and they cut him, I told him he should be grateful he has ANY house). He said "Mom, that's crazy!" I told him that he needs to wake up and look around, these professionals with educations are getting paid what he is getting paid and he doesn't even appreciate the job he has and still expects me to do a lot of stuff for him. I told him that my DH just went to 50% salary on disability and he responded with "I guess that means I shouldn't ask for money for clothes for school, huh?" UM, yeah, that's about the size of it!! I definitely am grateful for my local police department who come whenever I call them and actually (due to my kids) have my phone number memorized and we are on a first name basis already! (OK, SO MAYBE THAT'S NOT SUCH A GOOD THING!!).

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