Letter: Middle finger to Lima workers

As a longtime resident of Lima’s 2nd Ward, I am disappointed and maddened to find my councilman Sam McLean was involved in undermining the wage standards for workers in Lima and Allen County and using taxpayer benefits to do it.

McLean and his partner in M & M Investing were to receive a significant amount of money from the Toledo Port Authority to renovate the 318 Restaurant and Bar. The use of this money clearly came with strings, like the requirement to pay prevailing wages on that project. As chair of the utilities committee, McLean should certainly understand this law, which requires contractors working on that project to pay the wage standard for all trades in Allen County, as established by the State of Ohio.

These requirements were ignored during the construction process; substandard wage and benefit contractors were used. When this situation came to light, their response was basically, “Oops, our bad, we won’t take the money after all.” No money changed hands, but clearly a decision was made to not follow the prevailing wage requirements.

That bothers me. Had they not been caught, would they have pocketed taxpayer money while undermining Lima workers’ wages? I don’t know the answer; voters in the 2nd Ward can decide that on their own. The fact that McLean was involved in paying substandard wages to workers on his project — when he certainly should have known better because of long established laws – is enough reason for me to vote for his opponent. I want my city council members working to protect wages for working families – not sabotaging them!

There’s no justification for this blatant middle finger to Lima workers.

Gary McPheron, Lima


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