Sacramento’s labor leadership remains in dispute

Sacramento’s labor leadership remains in turmoil heading into Labor Day weekend.

Executive board members of the Central Labor Council declined to comment Friday after meeting for three hours with national AFL-CIO representatives about the fate of longtime Executive Secretary Bill Camp.

A group led by council President Lino Pedres informed Camp earlier in the week that he had been fired. But that group appears to have been forced to take a step back after AFL-CIO officials challenged the termination process.

Pedres declined to comment Friday after the meeting. He issued a statement saying, “The Labor Council is following an internal democratic process set forth by our constitution regarding personnel issues. To protect the integrity of that democratic process, we don’t have any further comment at this time.”

The week revealed a split in the coalition, which represents 104,000 workers in the region. Proponents of Camp say the attempted firing stems from Camp’s strong opposition to Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson’s ballot initiative, Measure L, that would dramatically increase the powers of the mayor’s office. Pedres and others say the attempted ouster is related to Camp’s job performance.

Brian Rice, head of the Firefighters Local 522, expressed his support Friday for Pedres’ efforts. “I think he wants to rebuild the Central Labor Council. He wants to ... put integrity back at the fore. I hope he doesn’t waver.”

Eric Sunderland, a delegate to the Central Labor Council and a Camp supporter, said he is among a group that plans to make a statement of some sort at the labor council’s annual Labor Day picnic Monday in Land Park. “We are absolutely trying to keep Bill Camp in place.”

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