By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Heads up, non-union contractors. Philadelphia’s electrician’s union has a new tool for keeping tabs on your construction site.

Drones. Local 98 president John Dougherty says the union has three of them.

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“They’re out and about,” said Dougherty.

Dougherty says the union bought them a few months ago, to deploy at job sites where they suspect work rule violations and at union protests of those sites, for video evidence that members don’t violate any rules while protesting.

“We are clever. I have a lot of young people around me these days who are into social media and all cutting edge apparatus and whatever we need to do to be competitive within the rules, we’re going to do.”

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Lawyer Wally Zimolong thinks it might not be within the rules. He represents the owner of the construction site in the union’s demonstration video on YouTube and says it could be used in a way that violates labor laws.

On the other hand, he grudgingly admits, it could be effective.

“He has a pretty good track record of achieving his ends….there’s some suspicion that this video was placed out there to chill any ideas other developers might have about construction a project in the city of Philadelphia that might not utilize union labor.”


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