Turner Construction — the firm Great Wolf relies on to build its resorts — will be tapping into area union labor to build the 500-room hotel and indoor water park in Manteca.
Councilman Mike Morowit said he’s been told union workers are elated that Great Wolf is delivering on a promise that the bulk of the 1,397 construction jobs will be from the local region.
The resort expected to break ground this summer will cost $180 million to build of which $76.3 million will go into the pockets of construction workers. The Great Wolf Lodge that will include a 109,767-aquare-foot indoor waterpark is expected to take 18 months to complete with a targeted opening of early 2020.
And those workers with special skills that may not be available within a reasonable commute to Manteca will — like happens on other jobs — will fill Manteca hotel rooms as well as drop cash in local restaurants.
That means the promised economic benefits for Manteca could start flowing as early as July.
Great Wolf will employ 250 fulltime and 250 part-time workers. They intend to have a job fair first for Manteca residents with the intent to hire as many qualified candidates as they can from the community that will be home to the firm’s 19th lodge.
Manteca needs to
start war on mattresses
Let’s face it. The homeless can’t trash up Manteca without help.
We’re talking about discarded mattresses, clothing, and other “donations” that are popping up every day not just in downtown but also in and around other commercial areas and even neighborhoods.
The city can make a dent in the problem by going after the enablers — people who either drive to spots where homeless have been known to gather and drop off bags of clothes that ultimately are picked through with the rest strewn about trashing the city.
If you are worried about the homeless having needed clothing, don’t be. Manteca Police have two community resource officers working the streets five days a week that will provide vouchers good for any clothing or shoes that homeless individuals may need that they can use at the Hope Chest on South Main Street.
If you want to help the homeless and do so without enabling the homeless to trash Manteca take your donations to the Hope Chest.
Too many times we’ve seen homeless bicycling out of neighborhoods towing a makeshift rig with a mattress strapped to it that they retrieved from in front of a house with “for free” signs to allow the owner to avoid the trouble of hauling to the dump or paying to dispose of it.
At the end of the day either the city — if such items are left in parks and on sidewalks — or owners of private property have to clean up the mess and pay to get rid of it.
That said the city needs to adopt municipal laws designed to stop the free-for-all trashing of the city.
They need an ordinance that makes it illegal for anyone to place items for free curbside in their front yards.
uIt needs to be a misdemeanor to drop bags of clothes and other items off at parks, city sidewalks, or either on public property.
Drop off areas need to be secured or staffed with financial penalties of let’s say $100 assigned to property owners where items are simply left next to boxes if they aren’t removed within 24 hours of a call from a code enforcement officer. This would have the effect of eliminating such unmanned drop-off boxes or forcing the supposed non-profits that place them to accept responsibility for the messes that are created or else the property owner will boot them off their land. If a property owner is willing to allow a public nuisance magnet such as a drop box for clothes to be placed on their property they need to be responsible or pay the price.
To make this work, there needs to be incentives for people to get involved as well as to change behavior.
If the city can employ an administrative process procedure as they have done with the illegal discharge of fireworks, they could slap perhaps a $1,000 fine plus the costs for cleaning up the mess and enforcement costs. The $1,000 could be use as a reward for people who can use their smartphones to provide visible proof of who dumped items and hopefully include license plates caught on video as well.
It may sound draconian but after years of this nonsense going on something needs to be done. Making it costly for people to trash up the city because they think they are helping the homeless should cut down on the problem and free up limited city manpower to address other pressing needs.
To contact Dennis Wyatt, email firstname.lastname@example.org