Back in the mid-60's I was involved in a contentious jurisdictional dispute. I wrote the following as a satire so relax and smile. Rowdy
Re: Explanation of Cost Overrun on Cable Pull Job #1313 Blackcat Road Snake Pit, AZ
I arrived at the job site on Monday, January 13, at 8:00 A.M. My manpower included myself and four journeymen. Our equipment consisted of one pick-up truck, one Mammoth Model #6 cable puller, and various small tools. The job consisted of installing 4-500 MCM THWN conductors in an existing 4" raceway with an estimated length of 180'.
After "setting up” we attempted to install a pull line in the conduit and were met with failure. One of our journeymen suggested tying a string to a rat's tail and sending him through the conduit. We trapped a rat over at the cafeteria and proceeded to implement the suggestion. The rat went half-way into the conduit, chewed the string off his (or her) tail, and then wouldn't go either way. We then borrowed a cat from the house across the road to chase the rat out but the cat caught the rat and ate him and then the CAT laid down for a nap and wouldn't come out.
At this point the laborer's steward came over and said the cat was dusting the conduit, and since dusting was laborer’s work, we would have to put a laborer on our payro11.
As quitting time was upon us, we arranged for a laborer for Tuesday and a small dog to chase the cat out of the conduit.
Tuesday morning the local pet shop owner was on-site with a small dog. When apprised of the situation, he said that since we were feeding animals (Rat eaten by Cat) we would have to hire a Zoo Keeper Third Class. Following several long distance telephone calls, we located a Zoo Keeper Third Class at the San Diego Zoo. He could not arrive until late Tuesday night so we "knocked-off" for the day.
Wednesday dawned bright and clear. The Zoo Keeper Third Class arrived and informed us that he could only feed the animals and that placing the dog in the conduit was the work of an Animal Handler Second Class. We obtained an Animal Handler Second Class from the Canine Division of the Phoenix Police Department and he arrived on-site within an hour.
The Animal Handler attempted placing the dog in the conduit and the dog saw the cat (much larger than the dog), bit the Animal Harldler, and ran off. The pet shop owner wanted his dog back and the Zoo Keeper informed us that in order to trap animals we would be required to contact the Frank Buck Hunter's and Trapper's Association and obtain a certified trapper. In addition, the Animal Handler stated that due to the natural hazards of the work, a nurse must be present on the job-site. Further, we received visits from the Business Agent of the Zoo Employees Union, the B/A of I.B.E.W. Local 13, the B/A of the Ironworkers Local, the B/A of the Operating Engineer's, the B/A of the Teamsters Local, the B/A of the Fisherman’s Local, the B/A of the Rodeo Cowboys Local, and a representative of the ASPCA.
The B/A of the Zoo Employees said that due to the number of animals on the site, we would be required to hire a Cage Cleaner and an Animal Dietician.
The local Health Department insisted that due to the animal waste accumulated by the Cage Cleaner, a pit must be dug in order to bury the waste. A backhoe with an Operating Engineer was ordered to dig and a dump truck with a Teamster driver was obtained to haul the waste to the pit.
A representative of the Environmental Protection Agency appeared and instructed US that we must have an environmental impact statement filed due to burying the animal waste. This problem was alleviated by presenting the EPA rep with four tickets to the Fiesta Bowl.
The Animal Dietician stated that a refrigerated truck must be supplied to store the animal food. The B/A of the IBEW said that due to the number of people employed, we must supply a change trailer, a toilet trailer and a timekeeper. The B/A of the Ironworkers said that the string on the rat's tail constituted "rigging" and we would have to hire a rigger. The B/A of the Rodeo Cowboy's disputed this and claimed it was "roping". The B/A of the Fishermen took issue with both the Ironworker and the Cowboy and claimed it was "fishing".
A picket was set-up over this jurisdictional dispute. The ASPCA rep said that we were being cruel to animals by letting the cat eat the rat and he organized a protest march at the main gate.
The pickets for the Ironworkers, Fishermen, and Rodeo Cowboys mis- understood and thought that the ASPCA protestors were calling THEM animals. A free-far-all ensued.
The local police arrested yours truly and our journeymen because everyone said it were our fault. We were charged with “inciting to riot".
After being released on bail, we spent the evening meditating at Joe’s Bar. Correction: Not Joe’s Bar but the local church.
Thursday was spent organizing our manpower and equipment which is listed below:
Friday we discovered that the cat had exited the conduit and carried the pull line through. The cable was pulled: IT WAS 5' SHORT.
The Owner decided to shut-down the plant due to all the problems associated with the riot and 1,300 people were laid-off. They all blame Our company for the loss of their jobs.
Our bid for this job was $3,254.00. Our current costs are $18,810.00 for labor, $1,954.00 for material, $732.00 for animal rental, $225.00 for animal food, $660.00 for back-hoe rental,~ $225.00 for dump truck rental, $4,840.00 for telephone, airline tickets, and misc., $1,500.00 for bail bond, $6,000.00 for attorney's fee, and $25,400.00 for repair of riot damage. We are also being sued for $10,000,000.00 by the plant owner for causing the shut-down of his plant.
Your Former Foreman
P. S. Please excuse the crayon as they won’t let me have anything sharp here at the rest home.