15 votes

Scranton, Pa., Slashes Civil Service Workers Pay to Minimum Wage

Unions representing civil servants in Scranton, Pa., filed suit Tuesday after the mayor cut pay for police, firefighters, garbage collectors and other public workers to minimum wage, saying that was all the city could afford.
Unions representing police, fire and public workers in the city of 76,000 filed three lawsuits after the city defied a judge's order and issued paychecks Friday that paid 398 city employees at the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour, according to the Scranton Times-Tribune.


Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
meekandmild's picture


now lets put congress and POTUS on minimum wage

should have started with public school teachers

most dispensable and easily replaced by home schooling compared to police and firefighter

Volunteer fire fighters

Almost three-fourths of the nation's 1.1. million firefighters are volunteers, and two-thirds of all fire departments are volunteer.

From 2005:


Anyone have more recent stats?


Is this an option?

Limited liability disappearing would be interesting. lol

ie. more accountablility perhaps

p.s. Who approves applications for corporating anyway????????



My violin is a hummin'.

They should close the Dunder

They should close the Dunder Mifflin Branch...

What about Dwight???

Does this effect Dwight Schrute? He has a position at the Sheriff's Department. Maybe he's a volunteer... I can't remember.

Couldn't help but laugh



Wages or jobs?

When you really boil it down the choice is: cut wages or cut the jobs all together. Scranton has no money and is hoping for a loan otherwise they're broke.

Scranton is a perfect example of local government corruption and fiscal irresponsibility and now the chickens have come home to roost. Kudos to Doherty for having the balls to implement this plan, but he and the rest of the "good ol' boys" who run the city ARE THE PROBLEM.

SteveMT's picture

Did the mayor also slash his own paycheck? Don't think so.

Those words are not in this story. Hypocritical, IMO.

He did.

He did.

fireant's picture

Yes he did.

It was in the original story a day or so ago. Look it up on faux.

Undo what Wilson did

SteveMT's picture

Good. Thanks for that news.

It only makes sense that he should also.


Does this mean the Judge and prosecutors will make minimum wage too?


Consider that the people who are being taxed

by "property tax" to pay the salaries of these "civil service workers" may be unemployed or income-less themselves.
Should some of these unemployed homeowners lose their homes to the tax-auctions, simply because the gov't workers want to be paid more?

The city jobs reflect the ability of the townspeople to pay for the services. If they can no longer pay, then the jobs need to be eliminated.
The truth is that we'd be a lot better off if most of these gov't jobs were eliminated anyway. And low pay for the rest.

If I can't pay my private garbage pick-up bill, the county doesn't confiscate my house. I'll just have to take my own trash to the dump.
But if I can't pay the property taxes to pay for the government indoctrination "schools" or other "city jobs"(even though I have no children), they will damn well come and take my home at the tax-auction.

So there was money for the bankers

to get BAILOUTS and get their bonuses, but the average worker is now on severe austerity measures.

Indeed, Obama promised a redistribution of wealth; the rich get more while the American workers will be reduced to poverty. The central banks of the world have to be eliminated.

END THE FED and all the international Rothschild-Rockefeller owned Central Banks that have taken over the world, because that is the root of what is happening in the USA and the world.

Key Lesson From Iceland Crisis: “Let Banks Fail”!


I agree totally.

"Its easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled."
Mark Twain

The Battle of the Blind

I do not understand the union initiative to sue the City. What do they expect to accomplish?

If the judge orders the township to pay full wages and benefits, where does the township get the money? Will the town be forced into bankruptcy, giving a bankruptcy judge ultimate control of the town? I guess that the judge would have to dissolve the contracts and all the workers would have to be fired due to lack of money? Would the workers be better off being fired?

This insolvency will continue to ripple throughout the country as the depression intensifies.

I feel sorry for local, state,and federal government workers - they did not know what was coming and they never understood that their salaries were based on the amount of money that could be successfully confiscated from the private sector. On the other hand, they do not seem to care how much they demand from private citizens.

Now that the wealth of the private sector is declining, so is the ability to support superior benefits and salaries for public workers, including essential services.

In the short term, private citizens who are taxpayers will suffer due to being overtaxed in a declining economy. And public workers will suffer because private workers cannot support them.

But, in the long term, the shakeout will (hopefully) result in a reset, forcing governments to quit relying on how much they can steal to support their irresponsible and immoral reckless money habits. And then the RP people will be able to brag the "I told you so" line.

Gene Louis
Supporting a Needed Tool for Government Feedback:
A Citizen-Operated Legal System.

Hey GeneLouis: Ever been to Scranton?

Been there myself, usually to buy tools for carpentry,masonry, etc.

It's built up with huge big-box stores like Harbor-Freight Home Depot and a large amount of eateries, steakhouses, McDonalds etc.

All new construction, generating jobs (spelled taxes) and "supposedley" REVENUE for the City of Scranton.

The deals that the politicos made with the developers probably were "sweetheart deals" that also "lined the pockets" of those same politicos, while shortchanging the municipal workers now necessary for:
the road maintenance(increased traffic),fire protection and code enforcement(public safety) and law enforcement(burglary, theft, traffic nforcement).
The politicians made the deals, negotiated the contracts and now feel free to ignore them...shame on them...not on the workers.

And remember this: If your kid takes a job at those establishments it is the municipal workers ensuring their safety to and from work, many different hours of day and night.

"Beyond the blackened skyline, beyond the smoky rain, dreams never turned to ashes up until.........
...Everything CHANGED !!

tired old myth

"it is the municipal workers ensuring their safety to and from work, many different hours of day and night."

"The two weakest arguments for any issue on the House floor are moral and constitutional"
Ron Paul


I think that we agree on the complicity of the city in causing these problems - I already addressed that issue here http://www.dailypaul.com/comment/2611992

Gene Louis
Supporting a Needed Tool for Government Feedback:
A Citizen-Operated Legal System.

Amen to that. Wish they would do that in NY...

all these overpaid, underworked, "civil servants" (what a joke) would be screaming bloody murder and threatening to pull money from the politicians. Now that's a show I'd love to see!

I, myself

am one of those "civil servants" to which you referred. Coincidentally I'm also from the Scranton area although I am employed by the state. I'd have to take issue with your statement about "overpaid and under worked". I work for less, actually less than I have made in the last twenty years, than I could receive in the private sector, but do appreciate the benefit package and security which goes along with my diminished financial compensation. As a matter of fact, I work inspecting private construction projects and am the least paid individual on the job. I am a highly experienced engineer and even the flag persons on the job receive at least 8 dollars an hour more than I. BTW I'm currently taking my coffee break.

There are no politicians or bankers in foxholes.

Coffee break? Nice. Just remember who pays your salary...

it's people making 8$ an hour who have no choice. Their wages are confiscated to keep the public payrolls bloated and the campaign contributions flowing to the politicians.

All bureaucracies are the same: a bunch of non-elected officials powered by the State to ensure that the citizens obey (see TSA, for one, and DMV).

There is nothing "civil servants" do that can't be done better, faster and cheaper by the private sector.

As usual

ignorance supplants common sense. I also pay taxes, and probably a much higher rate than you. My job is to ensure that private industry preforms their contractual duties and to also ensure that the government gets what it has paid for. Next time you travel over a bridge perhaps you might consider whether you would feel secure utilizing such a structure if there were no over sight while it was under construction and the contractor that built it was allowed to do so in any way he felt would help his bottom line. 4 minutes left on lunch...gotta go.

There are no politicians or bankers in foxholes.

Yeah because our

Yeah because our government-built infrastructure isn't falling apart or anything, right?

Private over public any day.

Simple Facts and Plain Arguments
A common sense take on politics and current events.


Our infrastructure

is falling apart (job security for me) due to the fact most of it was built with a 50 year life span projection and surprise surprise, most were constructed in the 1950's. Add this to the fact the way our government made a deal back in the Nixon days, to free Hoffa and pull any government supports from under the rail systems in return for the Teamsters support. The consequent increase in big rig traffic, which our bridges built in those days were never designed to support, have pulverized those bridges over time. One small pot hole on a concrete deck that receives a constant pounding from those large rigs can literally shake a bridge apart.
You make a statement about "government built". That is never the case, rather it is built by private contractors contracted by and over seen by the government. Perhaps if the roadway system were more like the rail ways, privately held with no tax support and used only by paying customers, you might be happier. It would make no difference to me, I'd still have a job and most likely a better paying one.

There are no politicians or bankers in foxholes.

Lunch? Nice. And I'll take my chances with the private sector...

like this (and I am no fan of Donald Trump):

"In the 1980s, the Koch administration botched an essential overhaul of the Wollman Rink in Central Park. City officials made some bad calls, but much of the blame had to go to government regulations - especially a wasteful state statute, the Wicks Law, that forces local governments to solicit bids from multiple contractors for most construction jobs, instead of hiring one general contractor.

In 1986, Trump declared that he could fix the famous ice skating rink. He did. As a private entrepreneur, he avoided Wicks, could move fast with the contractor of his choice and got the skating rink rebuilt ahead of time and under budget."

And that Second Avenue subway in NY that you are paying for? Yes, you and millions of Americans (federal funds). Over budget and behind schedule. Costing ONE Billion $ a stop (so far). Your tax dollars at work.

Which is it?

Your disdain of public sector employees or Government regulations? Your ignorance of the subject regarding the private sector is appalling. Without over sight you can bet your bottom dollar unscrupulous contractors would be short cutting upon every project imaginable. You insist upon ignoring the fact that road ways are a necessary part of our existence (they aren’t ice rinks and your comparison belies your naivety) and assume that we reside in this fairy tale land where every body is honest and should be trusted. Sorry but in my position I have caught things going on that would curl your hair. I once had a contractor place a thin sheet metal sign over a man hole cover which his employees had broken and then proceeded to pave right over it. As I watched the cars traveling over it, it actually flexed. I was terrified that before I could do something a bus might come along. Stay with your private sector policing itself, worked out real well with the banks didn’t it?
As far as bringing Government regulations into this discourse ( how that occurred is beyond me) you have no idea about my dislike for them. I have an eight page form that must be filled out for environmental agencies every time we receive one tenth of an inch of rain. That is just one example of the multitude of forms required to be filled out at days end.
Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty, if you think you can work a 13 hour day walking next to a paving machine laying down 300 degree asphalt with the ambient temperature exceeding 95 degrees with the traveling public hurling insults at you while you are dodging their vehicles and all the while measuring and calculating the amount of asphalt placed per square yard I’ll get you an application. Just don’t expect to get rich. I won’t hold my breath, you seem to be of the bitter type that curses the darkness rather than light a candle. And one last thing, don’t ever presume you are in any position to ever admonish me about any thing. Your statement “remember who pays your salary” as well as your quote about earning eight dollars an hour spoke volumes of your intelligence as well as mentality or lack there of. The amount of eight dollars an hour was about how much more an hour the lowest paid workers on the job made than I. Even then I’ll wager this public sector employees financial donations to the cause exceeds yours.

There are no politicians or bankers in foxholes.

Hey Belle! Don't Blame the Workers:

Blame the Administrators, that's the real villain.
The Mayor's assistant-to-the-assistant-to the-assistant-to...
Goes on and on and they make the big bucks.

Guys like chessie are just trying to do a job for a "decent wage", which as he said is usually less than private sector...but has security and benefits in lieu of financial compensation.

TRUMP?..Gimme a BREAK!..Silver-Spoon-in-his-mouth-born-robber-baron.

And you'd probably "outlaw" coffee-breaks......Sheesh!

"Beyond the blackened skyline, beyond the smoky rain, dreams never turned to ashes up until.........
...Everything CHANGED !!