San Jose, CA – The mayor of San Jose is expected to schedule a meeting with representatives of the trade show industry to discuss concerns over a controversial labor agreement at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center.
Mayor Chuck Reed’s senior policy advisor and public information officer, Michelle McGurk, said the meeting date had not been set, but Mayor Reed was anxious to “get to the bottom of this.”
“He wants to understand what is going on and what the concerns are,” McGurk told Trade Show Executive.
The pending meeting is in response to a labor agreement that took effect August 1 and made the San Jose local of the Teamsters Union the sole labor provider at the convention center.
Trade show organizers and general services contractors were not involved in the drafting of the agreement by the union and Team San Jose, the not-for-profit organization that manages the convention center.
The industry, led by the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) and the Exhibition Services & Contractors Association, has requested the city scrap the deal and start over with industry participation. The associations’ concerns cover a number of labor-law issues as well as concerns over rising costs and potential conflicts with contractors’ existing contracts with the San Francisco Teamsters local.
The request was turned over to the city’s Office of Economic Development for further study.