Call to regulation pros/cons...

owScott

Well-Known Member
Big difference between being licensed and being union. I personally have no problem with licensing.

And I spent a career working for companies that didn't have unions, and I also made a butt load of money. I did all my own bargaining - I didn't need somebody doing it for me. I just made sure I was the guy they never wanted to fire, and I got plenty of leeway with salary. It's not just the work I did; but, I put up with a lot of stress and long hours to get there, but I am proud of that. I have no problem with competition, and that's what it ultimately comes down to.
I think your are on point here union and licensing are 2 separate issues. I have no problem with competition as long as the playing field is level.
 

Jemco

Well-Known Member
Only in your opinion OW.

Other's view the two issues as inextricably entwined.

Who wants a climbing career with a 60K salary cap, working with disgruntled 15 buck an hour groundies?

Big outfits with inhouse 75 ton cranes are mighty hard to compete with yu know!

Jemco
 

ATH

Well-Known Member
Unions have been on a steady decline since the 50's. There isn't going to be a big movement to unions in an industry that has not been subjected to them in the past - especially an industry so full of small companies. Not sure what the percentage of non-line clearance work is done by companies with less than 50 employees??? But those aren't going to unionize. The unions probably don't even want to help them IF they wanted it because of administrative costs of so many small shops. Then those small shop owners aren't going to negotiate with unions....they can't afford the lawyers to do it.
 

Jemco

Well-Known Member
It's not exactly coincidental that middle class prosperity in America reached its zenith at the same moment union's were a majority of the workforce.

Back in the days when CEO's were content making only thirty times more than their average employee.

Jemco
 

Jemco

Well-Known Member
Correction, US labor union's heyday was reaching 30% of the labor force, in the 50's when Ike was at large n in charge.

Jemco
 

Birdyman88

Well-Known Member
All this debate is great, but let's simplify this a bit and look at the realities in play here:

1) If my good friend "Rob" and his teamsters at UPS decide to demand higher wages and threaten to strike, what is UPS going to do? You really think the suits are gonna put on a brown uniform and go drive those trucks? Do you think the shareholders are going to let the company go under? The residential customers want their toilet paper and may bypass delivery and to get it locally at a modestly higher price. The customer has now altered a very necessary purchasing habit bypassing the delivery service. Yes, UPS has a problem now, and may be an even longer term problem later. But, the UPS drivers don't have that much leverage either because there are very large obstacles to starting their own private delivery business to replace lost income. It is in both parties interest to work something out.

2) Now if my friend "Bob" and his arborist union decide to collectively hike prices and refuse to work for less, you know what's going to happen in the residential market - and by the way this is irrespective of whether the tree company itself goes under or not? Only the hazardous trees are going to get any attention. For everything else, most homeowners are going to 1) say let it die and fall and I'll go buy a saw and deal with it on the ground; or 2) say let it die and fall on something valuable and I'll get insurance to deal with it; or 3) they will attempt to take it on themselves; or 4) they will find somebody of adequate skill possibly with a proper license and insurance who is not part of the arborist union and who needs to feed their kid and they'll get them to do it for a lower price. Fortunately for the customer, and unfortunately for us, the barriers into this business aren't huge and those people aren't that hard to find according to the disussions out here on TB.

I can step out of my house right now and see at least 10 large dead trees that the residents have no interest in dealing with. They have told me as much and are not interested in paying for removal.

So .... where did that leave you? I know where it left the trees. I just don't think arborists have the leverage that UPS drivers have. Maybe I'm wrong.
 
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liv_rong

Member
The problem is they require require require but don't enforce anything at least around here.
Not here. I have issued multiple citations for companies not being in compliance. I’ll typically advise they need to get the license by end of day or Ill issue the citation. If they don’t then I’d write the ticket. The times I have issued the citation they get their license then fight the ticket and it gets thrown out, which is fine by me as long as they have the license. A few times they haven’t and have to pay the fine and move on.

For me I’m not trying to hurt anybody, they just need to do what every other legit company is doing. And that’s what our ordinance says, whether your a carpenter, landscaper or anything else.
 

owScott

Well-Known Member
Only in your opinion OW.

Other's view the two issues as inextricably entwined.

Who wants a climbing career with a 60K salary cap, working with disgruntled 15 buck an hour groundies?

Big outfits with inhouse 75 ton cranes are mighty hard to compete with yu know!

Jemco
Not sure what you mean by ONLY my opinion I was responding to birdyman88 post who said exactly that. I am for licensing but not for unions. How are they entwined exactly? Plenty of regulations and no unions. Maybe I am missing your point. Went back and read some of your post, I am trying to understand your perspective. From what I can understand you are for unions. Which is fine. My main point here is I am for regulation and enforcement of tree work, a complete and separate issue from unionization.
 

owScott

Well-Known Member
Unions have been on a steady decline since the 50's. There isn't going to be a big movement to unions in an industry that has not been subjected to them in the past - especially an industry so full of small companies. Not sure what the percentage of non-line clearance work is done by companies with less than 50 employees??? But those aren't going to unionize. The unions probably don't even want to help them IF they wanted it because of administrative costs of so many small shops. Then those small shop owners aren't going to negotiate with unions....they can't afford the lawyers to do it.
I totally agree.
 

owScott

Well-Known Member
This post was started discussing regulation and licensing. Then the subject of unions got brought in. Can somebody please explain how they are related in this conversation. I am confused. I understand they are both important subjects but we seem to be having 2 different conversation s about 2 different subjects
 

Birdyman88

Well-Known Member
Can somebody please explain how they are related in this conversation.
They're not really. But, I think the confusion came from the fact that in order to be licensed in some trades, you have to meet the experience requirement. In some union dominated trades you will likely have become a union member to even get the experience. It's obviously a touchy subject though that deserves its own thread.
 

owScott

Well-Known Member
They're not really. But, I think the confusion came from the fact that in order to be licensed in some trades, you have to meet the experience requirement. In some union dominated trades you will likely have become a union member to even get the experience. It's obviously a touchy subject though that deserves its own thread.
Thank you for the response. But this is not the case in tree work. I assume we were having a discussion in the context of tree work. We are in agreement
 
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Wrangler

Member
Hey Guys,I’m from New Jersey,and here you have to be licensed by New Jersey Board of Tree Experts to perform commercial tree work.An overview of the licensing and registration laws can be found at njtreeexperts.org .These laws took effect two years ago. I have operated a very small but busy tree service for almost 14 years.Since the implementation of this legislation my life, my family’s life and my employees lives have all gotten better.Your fears are legitimate,i for one came into compliance with a super bitter attitude about the government intervention in our industry! I remember sitting in a classroom on a beautiful Saturday morning,when I could have been doing treework,listening to a guy from the state explain to us how licensing and enforcement would work.There were about 40 of us there. I felt like I had SUCKER written accross my forehead! Believe me when I tell you there were alot of disgruntled and skeptical tre guys in that room! Most of the points you guys are bringing up were discussed that day!
The point i’m getting at though is the one key factor in all of this that determines weather it is a good or bad thing for our livelihood! The key is the people at the top! There is alot to it and I would urge you to look into how the program was crafted in my state. It seems to me that the success of a mandatory licensing law for treework is doomed to be a beauricratic mess without sincere salt of the earth tree guys at the top!
These laws level the playing field in many ways!One of thebig problems I faced everyday was pruning. It’s really hard sometimes to explain to a customer why the hack job that his neighbor just got done on their trees for cheap was a bad idea!All they see is alot of material got removed from the tree so less tree equals less leaves and hazards right! Then you try to explain why cutting huge limbs off of their 80year old oak tree right at the trunk might not be the best approach. Then you try to tell them that the job you are going to do will take a little longer,remove less big wood and cost more,but will be in their best interest! Thats a hard sell to someone that doesn’t understand trees! Now in Jersey ANSI A 300 IS the Law.You simply explain to customer that they can do whatever they want to their own tree but any professional that performs the work must do it according to Ansi standards or they are breaking the law. Now you sound more like a professional and less like a sheister! That is just one example of many I could give.
My main point though is that if the laws are well thought out and crafted with input from good sincere and knowledgeable veterns of our industry they will improve your life!
 

Jemco

Well-Known Member
Becoming a certified arborist is much like joining a union, in that most municipalities require a CA onsite as the work's performed.

Essentially a babystep forward......

Like saying having nothing but well qualified experienced arborists on every jobsite won't improve our industry.......

You guys'll be competing against unscrupulous outfits with the cheapest wallyworld parking lot labor forever at this rate.

Kinda like leadin a stubborn dehydrated mule to water......

Jemco
 

Wrangler

Member
Becoming a certified arborist is much like joining a union, in that most municipalities require a CA onsite as the work's performed.

Essentially a babystep forward......

Like saying having nothing but well qualified experienced arborists on every jobsite won't improve our industry.......

You guys'll be competing against unscrupulous outfits with the cheapest wallyworld parking lot labor forever at this rate.

Kinda like leadin a stubborn dehydrated mule to water......

Jemco
Well said!
 

ATH

Well-Known Member
I just don't understand why you are so hung up on the union thing in this thread???

Certified Arborist is absolutely nothing like being a union member.

*ISA doesn't stand between you and an employer (for good or bad).
*CA is an recognition, not a membership....they only verify a minimal qualification, not require their training program to achieve that recognition.
*The example of needing to be CA to contract for a municipality is opposite of a union protecting workers from termination...by definition, your job is temporary and typically no benefits are negotiated.
*ISA gets a set fee to administer the CA program (just one of their programs...). They don't take more just because you work hard to make more.
* ISA does nothing to bargain for wages or benefits...
 

Wrangler

Member
I just don't understand why you are so hung up on the union thing in this thread???

Certified Arborist is absolutely nothing like being a union member.

*ISA doesn't stand between you and an employer (for good or bad).
*CA is an recognition, not a membership....they only verify a minimal qualification, not require their training program to achieve that recognition.
*The example of needing to be CA to contract for a municipality is opposite of a union protecting workers from termination...by definition, your job is temporary and typically no benefits are negotiated.
*ISA gets a set fee to administer the CA program (just one of their programs...). They don't take more just because you work hard to make more.
* ISA does nothing to bargain for wages or benefits...
I may be way off here but I think the connection he is trying to make is that being a licensed professional is somewhat like being a union journeyman in that the title denotes a level of experience and education thus demanding a level of pay to match.At least that is the way I took it.
 

Jemco

Well-Known Member
Yeah well without CA credentials, all others need not apply, in most municipalities.

Do CA's deserve higher pay than non CA's?

What's to prevent an unscrupulous rich desk jockey from gettin richer off the backs of underpaid groundies, climbers n bucket boys?

Jemco
 
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