Keyword: union

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  • Union Gives False Explanation to Members About Why Executive Salaries Rose

    12/15/2014 7:32:47 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 6 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 12/14/2014 | Jarrett Skorup
    In response to a Michigan Capitol Confidential article about higher compensation for union executives, the Michigan Education Association sent a letter justifying the salary increases by making false claims to local leaders. The memo, which was sent Dec. 2 to all local presidents and is reprinted on the union’s Facebook page, says: Yesterday we filed our annual LM-2 filing with the US Department of Labor. The Mackinac Center is reporting ‘huge’ pay increases for MEA Executives. As some of you know, the LM-2 lists every person to whom MEA has written a check to over the past year – for...
  • Union President Concedes Right-to-Work Lawsuit; Strikes Back Against Workers Who Left

    12/10/2014 7:24:15 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 13 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 12/8/2014 | Tom Gantert
    After a teachers union president lost a legal battle involving forcing a non-union member to pay part of her salary for union-related activities, she responded by publishing the names of all former members who opted out of the union in a newsletter. Under Michigan's right-to-work law, employees can no longer be required to belong to or support a union as a condition of employment. According to Adam Neuman, the former Brighton Education Association member who sued to avoid having to pay part of BEA Union President Ellen Lafferty’s salary, the BEA president also put bright red “I Opted IN” buttons...
  • UAW gains important recognition at VW Tennessee plant

    12/09/2014 3:31:11 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 8 replies
    Reuters ^ | Mon Dec 8, 2014 6:04pm EST | Bernie Woodall
    The United Auto Workers gained a partial and unconventional recognition from Volkswagen AG after proving to the company that it represents at least 45 percent of workers at the company’s plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, a company spokesman said on Monday. The union on Monday said membership at its Local 42 in Chattanooga “exceeds a majority of workers at the plant.” It is the first time the UAW has been recognized at a foreign-owned auto assembly plant in the South, but it is short of the UAW’s goal of attaining exclusive bargaining rights for all of the plant’s 1,500 blue-collar workers....
  • Right-to-Work 'Freeloader' Claim Still a Farce

    12/09/2014 9:25:22 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 8 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 12/6/2014 | Jarrett Skorup
    In the debate over whether or not people should be forced to pay money to unions as a condition of employment, opponents of right-to-work laws often claim that workers who exercise their rights under the law are “freeloaders.” That is, that they are taking advantage of benefits from union bargaining while not paying their “fair share.” The Michigan Education Association, like most unions, supports collectively representing workers whether they are in the association or not because of the leverage it gives them at the bargaining table. Still, no private organization should have to provide benefits to people who aren’t paying...
  • Outgoing NEA Union President Gets $123,000 Raise as Membership Falls 40,700

    12/08/2014 5:08:59 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 4 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 12/5/2014 | Tom Gantert
    Dennis Van Roekel is going out in style in his final year as president of the National Education Association. Van Roekel received a $123,000 raise in 2014, boosting his annual salary to $429,509 and his total compensation to $541,632, according to documents the union recently filed with the U.S. Department of Labor. The NEA’s membership dropped 40,700 members in 2014, falling to 2.96 million and dipping below the 3-million mark for the first time in nine years. The Michigan Education Association is this state's NEA affiliate. Its members paid $7 million in dues to the national union in 2013, according...
  • They got it all wrong: New data shows how Dems can win back America

    12/06/2014 8:35:55 PM PST · by ObamahatesPACoal · 42 replies
    Salon ^ | Anat Shenker-Osorio and Jeffrey Parcher
    To everything there is a season and now is the time for election dissection. How do we reconcile an electorate that raised the minimum wage everywhere possible and opted for Republicans who profess not to believe in it? And what do we make of the – even for America – pathetically low turnout? One-third of Americans struggle to make ends meet. That’s 106 million people who often don’t know how they’ll pay rent, get childcare or retire. Even in our fractious America, that’s a large group with shared interests – decent wages, reliable work hours, affordable child and health care,...
  • Walmart workers scarce at Black Friday anti-Walmart protest in D.C.

    11/30/2014 12:31:05 AM PST · by Cincinatus' Wife · 72 replies
    The Washington Examiner ^ | November 29, 2014 | Sean Higgins
    Organizers of a post-Thanksgiving protest on behalf of workers at a Walmart in downtown Washington, D.C. identified only one of the participants as actually working at that store. The admission underscores the fact that few Walmart workers have been involved in the protests. "Thirty striking workers from Washington, D.C., Virginia and Maryland took part in today’s protest, and Melinda Gaino, one of the striking workers, works at the H Street Store," said Julie Anderson, a spokeswoman for the 1.3 million member United Food and Commercial Workers union, which organized the event. Walmart spokesman Kory Lundberg claimed the number was far...
  • Kean University's $219,000 table the center of attention

    11/28/2014 7:16:00 PM PST · by Coleus · 27 replies
    bergen record ^ | 11.23.14 | PATRICIA ALEX
    MICHAEL KARAS/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Attendees recently sat around Kean University's custom-made oak conference table. Breaking News: Legislator calls for investigation into Kean University's $219K conference tableIt costs more than $44,000 in tuition to attend Kean University for four years, and many of the school’s students struggle to pay the bill.  But the taxpayer-supported school in the township of Union spent $219,000 so far and has authorized up to $270,000 — about the average price of a house in the nearby working-class neighborhood — for a custom-made, circular conference table that seats 23 and features data ports, microphones and an illuminated...
  • State Can’t Name Any School Closed for Poor Performance

    11/24/2014 6:49:47 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 1 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 11/22/2014 | Tom Gantert
    As charter public school authorizers await details of sanctions State Superintendent of Public Instruction Michael Flanagan has threatened for poorly performing charter schools, choice advocates are asking why the state doesn't subject conventional public schools to the same accountability. Flanagan has threatened to suspend charter school authorizers’ ability to create more schools if their current ones don't meet performance standards. The Michigan Association of Public School Academies and Great Lakes Education Project claim that no conventional school has ever been shut down for poor academic performance, an allegation that may be hard to verify. On the other side, top state...
  • After Right-to-Work Opt Out Campaign, Union Doubletalks

    11/20/2014 5:50:23 AM PST · by MichCapCon
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 11/19/2014 | Vinnie Vernuccio
    After an overwhelmingly successful informational campaign where the Mackinac Center’s August Opt Out Project told Michigan Education Association members statewide about their rights and the limits their union tried to put on right-to-work, the MEA continues its attempt to provide inaccurate information to its members and to the public. Regardless of how many teachers and other school personnel exercised their rights during the MEA’s arbitrary (and now ruled illegal) "August Window," the goal of the project was to make sure that every member knew about when and how to exercise those rights. Follow-up August opt-out postcard The second postcard sent...
  • Walmart workers pushing for higher wages plan 1,600-store protest on Black Friday

    11/19/2014 2:16:08 AM PST · by SoFloFreeper · 27 replies
    Financial Post ^ | 11/14/14 | Nathan Layne
    A group of Walmart employees pushing for higher wages said on Friday they were planning protests at 1,600 Walmart stores nationwide on Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year in the United States. The labour group, Our Walmart, said it had protested 1,200 to 1,400 Walmart stores last year on Black Friday, the day after the Thanksgiving holiday.
  • 2014 Election Aftermath: Unions' bark worse than their bite

    11/17/2014 11:19:13 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 1 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 11/16/2014 | Vinnie Vernuccio
    Yesterday’s election was not so much a referendum on labor reform as yet another reminder that when elected officials protect freedom and taxpayers they do not need to fear the wrath of the union political juggernaut. These reformers winning and opponents losing cannot be easily dismissed as “it was a Republican wave which protected the politicians who took on labor reform.” Almost more striking than what was in the Republican wins was what was not in the Democrat losses. In Michigan for example, the birthplace of the UAW, the state with the 5th highest union membership rate in the country...
  • Nurses union to strike over inadequate Ebola protection

    11/12/2014 8:25:40 AM PST · by SeekAndFind · 3 replies
    Hotair ^ | 11/12/2014 | Jazz Shaw
    But remember, voters… there’s nothing to worry about. We’ve got the entire situation under control. Nurses across the United States will stage protest rallies and strikes on Wednesday over what they say is insufficient protection for health workers dealing with patients possibly stricken with the deadly Ebola virus.The California-based nurses’ union, National Nurses United, says hospitals still lack enough hazardous materials suits which leave no skin exposed and sufficient powered air-purifying respirators to properly protect nurses from exposure.“Inadequate preparedness for Ebola symbolizes the erosion of patient care standards generally,” National Nurses United spokesman Charles Idelson said on Tuesday. So...
  • Four Saginaw Teachers Stand Up and Win

    11/12/2014 7:43:52 AM PST · by MichCapCon · 3 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 11/8/2014 | Patrick Wright
    In September 2013, the Michigan Education Association had a surprise for the nearly 8,000 public school employees who thought that by not signing up for the union’s e-dues that they were expressing their desire to disaffiliate from the union and thereby exercise their freedoms under Michigan’s newly enacted right to work law. The union announced that it was going to enforce its little-known bylaw purported to only allow members to resign during the month of August. Through the efforts of the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation and four brave Saginaw school teachers, the so-called August window has been declared illegal. When...
  • Can Liberals Talk About Standard-of-Living Stagnation Without Sounding All Socialist?

    11/11/2014 2:36:21 AM PST · by Cincinatus' Wife · 14 replies
    Slate ^ | November 10, 2014 | Ben Mathis-Lilley
    Much of the discussion of last Tuesday's election results has addressed voters' ongoing dissatisfaction with what, by the numbers, is an improving economy. Commenters like Slate's William Saletan noted that Republicans won by using liberal-sounding economic rhetoric to play on income-stagnation angst. President Obama talked about the issue in a press conference, citing the dearth of high-wage jobs amidst the recovery. Today Josh Marshall of the progressive news and commentary site Talking Points Memo and Derek Thompson of the Atlantic poke deeper into the issue. They really poke the heck out of the issue, I tell you! Marshall's piece is...
  • No plan B for Pueblo police, fire unions after tax fails ( Colorado )

    11/10/2014 6:49:06 AM PST · by george76 · 5 replies
    KRDO ^ | Nov 09, 2014 | Michelle San Miguel
    Voters reject half-cent sales tax by 74 percent. Pueblo police and fire union members don't plan to lobby city council for more money in lieu of a public safety tax failing.
  • Virginia’s School Choice Policies Contrast with District of Columbia

    11/03/2014 1:49:06 PM PST · by ThethoughtsofGreg
    American Legislator ^ | 11-3-14 | Rudy Takala
    The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) last week released its annual Report Card on American Education, where it grades states’ education policy based on six areas: state academic standards, charter school laws, home-school regulations, private school choice programs, overall teacher quality and policies and digital learning opportunities. Interestingly, states sharing the same border often receive very different rankings. For example, Virginia education policies ranked very differently from neighboring Washington, D.C. Virginia received a cumulative “C-” while the District received a cumulative “B-”. Notably, the District provides families greater flexibility with more than 100 charter locations serving nearly 40,000 students, or...
  • Union, District Strike Illegal Language from Contract

    10/31/2014 9:17:06 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 2 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 10/26/2014 | Anne Schieber
    Within two weeks of being sued by the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation, the Brighton Education Association and Brighton Area Schools agreed to strike illegal language in its teachers contract requiring non-union members to pay a fee to support teachers leaving the classroom to conduct union business. Brighton High School teacher Adam Neuman, the plaintiff in the case, says he is relieved as a non-union member to no longer live with the treat of payroll deductions for so-called release time. “This was never anything personal against the union or the district,” he said. “I’m glad that we got a resolution so...
  • Hundreds of Colorado teachers banned for criminal behavior, zero for lousy teaching

    10/31/2014 7:34:14 AM PDT · by george76 · 11 replies
    KVDR ^ | October 31, 2014 | Chris Halsne and Chris Koeberl
    Eighty-eight teachers over the last decade have been permanently removed from Colorado classrooms for sexual improprieties – the vast majority violating young victims from their own schools. ... not a single teacher lost their license for simply being a weak educator of children. To get decertified, records show it usually takes felony-level criminal allegations or lying on the teaching certificate application about lesser crimes. Karla Danzeisen says she spent years teaching Spanish to Denver high school students in a fog of pain pills, cocaine and methamphetamines. She told Halsne, “I was using drugs every day. I was going to teach...
  • Union, District Force Non-Union Teacher to Pay for Union Release Time

    10/24/2014 6:18:39 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 4 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 10/23/2014 | Anne Schieber
    Brighton teacher Adam Neuman went to Afghanistan to fight for freedom. Now he simply wants to exercise it back home. As a combat veteran who served in the Kandahar Province for nearly a year, the civics teacher regards attacks on his liberty as a personal affront. So, when the teachers union and his employer told him they were taking money from his paycheck to pay for a teacher to leave the classroom to work on union business, Neuman felt he had no choice but to sue. In August, Neuman quit the Michigan Education Association and its local affiliate, the Brighton...
  • Union demands send Japanese firm, jobs packing from California town

    10/24/2014 2:47:29 AM PDT · by grundle · 30 replies
    Fox News ^ | October 23, 2014 | Perry Chiaramonte
    The California city of Palmdale was ready to roll out the red carpet this summer when a Japanese company agreed to build a $60 million factory on a city-owned, vacant parcel on the southwest side of town -- but now the company is taking its project out of state and critics say union greed is to blame. As many as 300 people were slated to work at the 400,000-square-foot plant, painting and wiring light rail cars under a huge contract with the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority. It was a coup for Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford, and a plan that...
  • Union Says Photo IDs not Necessary to Vote — Unless You Vote to Leave Union

    10/20/2014 11:45:48 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 4 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 10/19/2014 | Tom Gantert
    In recent arguments against states requiring voters to show a photo ID, the United Auto Workers Local 6000 has compared concerns about voter fraud to belief in the fictional Loch Ness monster and Yeti. The union wrote on its Facebook page that requiring a photo ID for voting is the goal of the “billionaire funded” American Legislative Exchange Council, and is intended to create obstacles for voters who might support a more “progressive” agenda. When its own members, however, want to exercise their freedoms under the new right-to-work law in Michigan to opt out of paying union dues as a...
  • More ‘Walker is Hitler’ rhetoric appears from the left (WI)

    10/20/2014 9:01:59 AM PDT · by afraidfortherepublic · 29 replies
    The Wisconsin Reporter ^ | 10-20-14 | M. D. Kittle
    MADISON, Wis. — Here we go again — another roadside sign comparing Republican Gov. Scott Walker to Adolf Hitler. “WALKERS MOTTO DIVIDE & CONQUER SO WAS HITLERS,” proclaims the grammatically challenged, hand-written sign pinned to posts just off of Mariner Road near Wisconsin Highway 83 in Hartland. The sign is across the highway from Westbrook Church, an Evangelical Christian worship center at 1100 Wisconsin 83. SIGN OF THE TIMES: Another ‘Walker is Hitler’ sign, this one in Hartland, Wis., amid the state’s heated campaign for governor. If history is any indicator, expect more of these messages during the last 15...
  • Obamacare Causing Big Layoffs for Union Nurses

    10/19/2014 6:16:16 PM PDT · by george76 · 22 replies
    Breitbart News ^ | 19 Oct 2014 | Chriss W. Street
    Kaiser Permanente and other health providers are putting pressure on the powerful California Nurses Association (CAN) in negotiations for reductions in medical staffing and compensation due to the implementation of California’s version of Obamacare. Union nurses on Friday tried to launch a new initiative by demanding an extra compensation supplement and more staffing to be prepared to fight the Ebola virus. But just three years after union nurses won huge contract gains by striking, Obamacare rules that cut patient access to care could now result in huge nurse layoffs. ... the California Nurses Association and other labor unions that campaigned...
  • Biggest Labor Union Throws Support Behind "Independent" Greg Orman ( Kansas )

    10/18/2014 6:44:21 AM PDT · by george76 · 8 replies
    Townhall. ^ | Oct 17, 2014 | Kevin Glass
    This week the AFL-CIO threw its considerable weight behind Democrat-turned-independent Greg Orman in his bid for U.S. Senate in Kansas. This came on the heels of a debate that was all about defining who Greg Orman really is: ... The AFL-CIO won't run TV ads for Orman, spokesman Jeff Hauser said, but his campaign will now be incorporated into the union's extensive ground game there. The AFL-CIO had previously endorsed Kansas's Democratic Party's gubernatorial nominee, Paul Davis, who is locked into one of the country's most competitive gubernatorial contests with incumbent Republican Gov. Sam Brownback. During Wednesday's debate, incumbent Sen....
  • Air France unions seek to stop flights to Guinea

    10/18/2014 8:13:18 AM PDT · by DeaconBenjamin · 10 replies
    the Local (France) ^ | 18 Oct 2014 10:32 GMT+02:00
    Air France flight attendant unions on Friday called for a halt to services to the Guinean capital Conakry due to concerns about a "serious risk" of spreading Ebola. The daily Air France Paris-Conakry flight "carries a serious risk of spreading the epidemic, particularly in our country," read a statement from the two unions of flight crew and commercial staff. They called for a closure of the route until the epidemic is under control. They also slammed what they called totally inappropriate protection from Air France -- which provided them with "a simple pair of gloves" -- and called for more...
  • You Know the Koch Brothers: Now Meet the 'Koch Sisters'

    10/17/2014 8:18:31 AM PDT · by God'sgrrl · 13 replies
    ABC News ^ | October 6, 2014 | Erin Dooley
    Joyce and Karen Koch aren’t related to each other. But that’s not important; they’re sisters “in spirit.” Besides, what they really want you to know is that they’re not related to the Koch brothers, the billionaire conservatives funding political candidates and causes nationwide. more...
  • Afghanistan vet does battle with Michigan teachers union

    10/16/2014 6:33:10 PM PDT · by george76 · 7 replies
    Fox News ^ | October 16, 2014 | Perry Chiaramonte
    Adam Neuman left the classroom in Michigan to serve in the army in Afghanistan. Michigan high school social studies teacher Adam Neuman was surprised when he saw the $80 deduction on his paycheck from the Brighton Public School District. Then, he was angry. The U.S. Army veteran, who served one tour in Afghanistan, had opted out of the Brighton Education Association and parent organization, the Michigan Education Association, in August, as was his right under the state's 2012 law. He knew he wasn't subject to dues withholding, yet the itemized stub showed the deduction. “I don’t feel that they should...
  • Union Leader Celebrates Failing School’s Performance

    10/15/2014 1:52:27 PM PDT · by MichCapCon · 2 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 10/15/2014 | Tom Gantert
    Flint Northwestern High School’s academic performance is not the type most would want to celebrate. The school has consistently been among the worst performing in the state. Yet in a recent visit, the leader of the National Education Association told union members at the school that Northwestern "did it right." NEA President Lily Eskelsen Garcia stopped at Flint Northwestern as part of statewide tour on Sept. 24 to celebrate it being moved off a Michigan Department of Education "priority schools list." The state applies this label to the lowest performing 5 percent of schools, which makes them subject to increased...
  • Army Fleet Support lays off workers ( Fort Rucker, Alabama )

    10/12/2014 5:20:44 PM PDT · by george76 · 1 replies
    Dothan Eagle ^ | Oct 10, 2014
    The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers announced the layoffs on its Facebook page Thursday night. The initial number reported by the union was 58. ... L-3 Army Fleet Support is reducing its workforce in order to address recent decreases in our customer’s flying-hour program and projected requirements ... Workers at Army Fleet Support went on strike briefly near the end of April... AFS announced layoffs of 50 workers in April of 2013 and 70 workers in August of 2013.
  • SFPS leads suit seeking increase in school funds

    10/10/2014 9:27:45 AM PDT · by redreno · 1 replies
    http://www.santafenewmexican.com ^ | 10/09/2014 | By Robert Nott
    Santa Fe Public Schools is among three school districts suing the state of New Mexico and its Public Education Department in an effort to force an increase in funding for public schools in a state that perennially scores near the bottom in national ratings. The lawsuit, filed Thursday in state District Court in Santa Fe, asks the court to declare that current funding levels violate the New Mexico Constitution and asks the state to change its funding formula to offer equal support for students who are English language learners or living in poverty.
  • Teacher Indoctrination

    10/08/2014 4:51:58 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 11 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | October 8, 2014 | Walter E. Williams
    Students at several Jefferson County, Colorado, high schools walked out to protest the school board's recently proposed curriculum review committee that seeks to promote patriotism, respect for authority, free enterprise, plus the positive aspects of U.S. history. The teachers union, whose members forced two high schools to close by calling in sick, is against the implementation of performance-based pay. The union has encouraged and applauded student protests against what it's calling academic censorship.The average parent and taxpayer has little idea of what is being taught to our youngsters. In February 2006, I wrote a column titled "Indoctrination of Our Youth,"...
  • House Dems: We've been abandoned [labor $$ going to protect Senate firewall)

    10/06/2014 10:53:39 AM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 4 replies
    The Hill ^ | Jessica Taylor and Alexandra Jaffe
    “We made a decision very early on that protecting the Senate firewall was our top priority,” LCV spokesman Jeff Gohringer told The Hill.House Democratic strategists are frustrated that key outside groups are putting their money into the fight for the Senate at the expense of the House. Spending on House races by organized labor as well as groups representing women and environmental organizations as dropped by $18 million compared to the last cycle, the groups said. That has Democrats worried their House losses on Election Day could be in the double digits, making it that much harder to take back...
  • Teachers Sue Union for Censoring Charitable Donations ( Pennsylvania )

    10/06/2014 9:13:10 AM PDT · by george76 · 4 replies
    Dail Signal ^ | October 04, 2014 | Kelsey Harkness
    Two teachers have taken Pennsylvania’s largest teachers union to court over its attempt to decide which charities may be supported by teachers as an alternative when they decline to join the union on religious grounds. The teachers, Chris Meier from Lancaster County and Jane Ladley from Chester County, are required—as a condition of employment—either to be a member of the Pennsylvania State Education Association or pay a nonmember “fair share” fee of $435. Last spring, PSEA accepted Meier and Ladley’s status as religious objectors. In lieu of paying membership dues, state law instructed the teachers to pay a “fair share”...
  • Union Bullying Members is Shedding Them: Over 500 People Leave Operating Engineers

    10/03/2014 6:21:20 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 4 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 10/1/2014 | Tom Gantert
    An official from a Michigan union that bullied members who opted out under the state's right-to-work law by printing their names in its online newsletter is now saying they have had to abandon local public school bargaining units for lack of support. In its winter 2013 newsletter, Operating Engineers Local 324 used the derogatory term “freeloaders” to identify 19 members who had opted out of the union under the right-to-work law. At that time, Business Manager Doug Stockwell said the union had “weathered the storm” with right-to-work. Michigan Capitol Confidential broke that story and it went on to receive national...
  • Federal judge questions sacredness of government employee pensions

    10/02/2014 9:27:04 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 14 replies
    American Thinker ^ | 10/02/2014 | Thomas Lifson
    When government employees buy the California legislature with huge campaign contributions, one of the benefits they expect in return is absolute protection of the lush pensions they are promised, even when their employer goes into bankruptcy. Thus, California law insists that Calpers, the state-backed agency used to provide many government employees with their pensions, is granted very special powers, including the right to seize assets and liquidate them to provide for full payment of pensions, even when other creditors are paid a penny on the dollar.But yesterday, a federal bankruptcy judge in California issued a preliminary ruling indicating that once...
  • PEF debit card case kept private

    09/30/2014 5:53:45 PM PDT · by Shady · 4 replies
    Albany Times Union ^ | 9/30/14 | Brendan J Lyons
    Albany Officials at one of the state's largest public labor unions shielded a downstate council leader from potential prosecution after she allegedly used a union debit card to make at least $20,000 in questionable purchases — including liquor, restaurant bills and home improvement items. Several people familiar with the matter, and internal documents filed with the Albany-based Public Employees Federation, indicate PEF's leaders asked to handle the matter as an internal "ethics violation" when contacted several months ago by the office of Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe. The union represents more than 53,000 state government workers. The district...
  • Colorado Teachers' Union President Thanks NEA for Help with 'Hostile School Boards'

    09/29/2014 3:05:48 PM PDT · by george76 · 18 replies
    Breitbart News ^ | 29 Sep 2014 | Dr. Susan Berry
    Speaking at the National Education Association (NEA) Representative Assembly at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver on July 3rd, Colorado Education Association (CEA) President Kerrie Dallman referred to the school district of Jefferson County (JeffCo) – where teachers have staged a “sick-out” and students left classes to protest throughout last week – as one of three in her state in which the teachers’ union was “working against hostile school boards.” “I also want to say thank you to the staff and leaders from the 18 states around the country who were sending in 48 staff under the NEA shared staffing...
  • Here's How An Alleged Cheating Ring That Could Send Atlanta Teachers To Prison Was Uncovered

    09/25/2014 5:18:06 PM PDT · by george76 · 20 replies
    Business Insider ^ | Sep. 25, 2014 | Erin Fuchs
    Prosecutors are using a law originally enacted to go after mobsters to accuse former principals, teachers, and administrators of trying to boost their bonuses by conspiring to artificially raise kids' test scores. While only 12 ex-educators are on trial in Atlanta, dozens of teachers and administrators were initially charged and many have since pleaded guilty in exchange for their cooperation. The dozen on trial could get up to 20 years in prison, and they might never have been prosecuted if it weren't for a pair of ambitious reporters at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (AJC). Back in 2008, Heather Vogell, now a...
  • Grasping At Taxes to Pay for Pensions

    09/25/2014 1:01:40 PM PDT · by MichCapCon · 9 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 9/20/2014 | James Hohman
    Steve Malanga at Public Sector Inc. reports on Pennsylvania governments increasing taxes in order to pay increased pension requirements. Malanga follows tax increases in Scranton, York City, and in a number of school districts. He also notes that districts are looking to challenge property assessments in search of more revenue. The Warrior Run School District in Union and Northumberland counties has a different idea on how to raise revenues. Last week the school district sent registered letters to dozens of property owners advising them that it is challenging the assessments of their properties, asking for a higher value and tax...
  • Hundreds Of Colorado Students Protest History Curriculum Changes That Would Promote Patriotism

    09/24/2014 5:50:48 AM PDT · by blam · 33 replies
    Fox News ^ | 9-24-2014 | AP
    September 24, 2014 Associated Press ARVADA, Colo. – Hundreds of students walked out of classrooms around suburban Denver on Tuesday in protest over a conservative-led school board proposal to focus history education on topics that promote citizenship, patriotism and respect for authority, in a show of civil disobedience that the new standards would aim to downplay. The youth protest in the state's second-largest school district follows a sick-out from teachers that shut down two high schools in the politically and economically diverse area that has become a key political battleground. Student participants said their demonstration was organized by word of...
  • Dropping Union Health Insurance Saves District $737K

    09/23/2014 10:29:51 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 2 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 9/20/2014 | Tom Gantert
    In the three years since Dansville Schools dropped Michigan Education Special Services Association insurance for a different high-deductible plan, it has saved $736,873.87 and its employees haven't had to pay for any health insurance premiums in that time, according to the superintendent. MESSA is a third-party administrator affiliated with the Michigan Education Association that buys health insurance from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and resells it to school districts. Dansville Superintendent Amy Hodgson said the $736,873 was how much more the district would have paid had it kept MESSA. She said the employees do have to make co-pays for...
  • 'Worst Fears' of Union Realized as Teachers Leave

    09/18/2014 8:26:36 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 12 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 9/16/2014 | Tom Gantert
    In a video last year discussing the first year of the right-to-work law, Michigan Education Association President Steve Cook said his greatest fear was losing “thousands” of union members. That was after the group withheld information about how its members could opt out of the union. Cook said in the video he talked to former United Auto Workers President Bob King who told him unions maintain about 94 to 95 percent of membership in right-to-work states. Cook said that wasn’t bad but added that the MEA’s claims of losing only 1 percent of membership proved they were not inept. Fast...
  • Union's August Window Declared Illegal

    09/15/2014 1:04:04 PM PDT · by MichCapCon · 7 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 9/12/2014 | Jack Spencer
    Administrative Law Judge Julia C. Stern has ruled that under Michigan’s right-to-work law, public employees can resign from a union at any time of the year. On that basis, Judge Stern said that the state’s largest teacher union, the Michigan Education Association, has been violating the law by enforcing its so-called 'August window.' “Freedom and the ability to exercise one’s rights do not come with a time limit,” said Patrick J. Wright, vice president for legal affairs at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. “As we have said all along, the bylaws of a membership organization do not trump state...
  • Not a ghost of a chance

    09/15/2014 2:02:39 AM PDT · by Squawk 8888 · 7 replies
    Toronto Sun ^ | September 14, 2014
    Someone is pulling our leg. This has to be a joke. And the government needs to call their bluff on it. The Public Service Alliance of Canada has come forward with some pretty tall demands for their employees. These include an extra week of paid holiday every year and one cent for every hour worked by their members to be contributed to a “social justice fund” that the union would control. The government must say no to these. But they’re not even the headline material. They’re just the opening act. No, the real doozy is they want employees to be...
  • Despite proven academic success of NYC’s charter schools, the mayor and unions are waging a war on..

    09/13/2014 12:17:37 PM PDT · by george76 · 7 replies
    AEI ^ | September 12, 2014 | Mark J. Perry
    All four Harlem Success Academy charters serve primarily minority student populations (all are 93.5 to 97.1% black and Hispanic) and low-income households (75 to 80% of students at these schools qualify for free or discounted lunch), and yet all are ranked academically higher than about 97% of all schools in New York state based on 2013-2014 standardized test assessments in math and reading. What a truly amazing academic success story! Harlem Success Academy 3, an elementary school where 95.2% of the students are black or Hispanic and 80% are from poor households who qualify for free or discounted lunch, performed...
  • Wife's weeping over anti-union law drove Dem DA to target Wis gov, staff & conservatives for 5 yrs

    09/10/2014 12:49:31 AM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 38 replies
    The Daily Mail ^ | September 10, 2014
    A Democratic district attorney who has pursued Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker over alleged campaign finance violations told a fellow prosecutor that his crying wife, a union official, drove him to hunt the governor and his conservative allies because of his anti-union laws feared by organized labor. The explosive revelation came Tuesday as lawyers for Milwaukee DA John Chisholm began two days of oral arguments in a Chicago courtroom over earlier rulings that effectively ended his wide-ranging investigation. The investigation aimed to show that conservative groups were illegally working hand-in-hand with Walker's office when they ran 'issue ads' pressing the...
  • Union Falsely Tells Teachers They Lose Sick Leave Benefits if They Opt Out

    09/09/2014 7:15:41 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 6 replies
    Capitol Confidential ^ | 9/4/2014 | Tom Gantert
    The president of a local teachers union incorrectly told his members they would lose benefits to a sick bank all teachers had contributed to if they left the union. Todd Mignerey, a high school teacher at Flushing Community Schools and the Flushing Education Association union president, sent the email in June while discussing the Michigan Education Association’s opt-out period in the month of August. The claim was made in a 11-page PDF document entitled, “Union Membership Has Benefits, Why Should I Remain In FEA, MEA, NEA?” Page 3 of the document states, “FSTDIP (Formerly Sick Bank)”: “MEA legal has confirmed...
  • Big money flows to top brass of pipe welders union

    09/08/2014 9:37:55 PM PDT · by george76 · 4 replies
    Watchdog ^ | September 8, 2014 | Arthur Kane
    A Tulsa, Okla.,-based plumbers and pipe welders union is clearly flush with cash, as a dozen of their top officials made more than $200,000 last year, federal records show. Plumbers AFL-CIO Local Union 798 paid business manager Daniel Hendrix $280,000 and financial secretary/treasurer Wade Pilgreen $272,000 in fiscal 2013, according to disclosures the union filed with the U.S. Department of Labor. ... Hendrix said his pipe fitters make about $50 an hour and work at least a 60-hour a week plus expenses, and the union staff is compensated at a similar rate for their roughly 80-hour work weeks. A person...
  • Taxpayers and workers gouged by labor-law dodge: 2009 stimulus cheated taxpayers and workers

    09/05/2014 9:52:34 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 9 replies
    McClatchy DC ^ | 09/05/2014 | By Mandy Locke and Franco Ordońez
    <p>The largest government infusion of cash into the U.S. economy in generations – the 2009 stimulus – was riddled with a massive labor scheme that harmed workers and cheated unsuspecting American taxpayers.</p> <p>At the time, government regulators watched as money slipped out the door and into the hands of companies that rob state and federal treasuries of billions of dollars each year on stimulus projects and other construction jobs across the country, a yearlong McClatchy investigation found.</p>