NILRR News Clips January 19, 2015


Public Unions vs. the Public

Wall Street Journal Online, January 15, 2015

The facts: Public-sector unions are not underdogs. . .

As Mr. DiSalvo shows, public-sector unions are also rich. Taken together, they spend hundreds of millions of dollars annually lobbying governments on behalf of their members. Our courts have ensured that funding for political activity will flow in the future by upholding rules that require payments from workers. Opponents of public-sector unions must content themselves with minor victories such as the recent Supreme Court opinion in Harris v. Quinn, which grants home-care workers, a narrow group, the right not to pay union dues.

Michels Corp. Construction Worker Wins Thousands in Settlement from Company & Union After Illegal Firing, January 14, 2015

Castle alleged in charges he filed with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that when he notified union officials that he was refraining from union membership and full dues payments, they stated that they would not comply with the procedural requirements established under Beck. Furthermore, union officials refused his good faith efforts to pay the union for dues they claimed he owed.

JAILBIRDS: Teamsters Free From 25 Years Of Federal Oversight, January 14, 2015

“Even by Big Labor’s low standards, Teamster union bosses have an unusually ugly record of corruption and thuggery,” Mix continued. “Unfortunately, corruption and illegal activities will continue to be endemic to Organized Labor as long as union bosses continue to fund their activities by extorting workers for forced dues by threatening to have them fired for refusing to pay up.”

WPRI Poll: Wisconsinites Support Right-To-Work Legislation, January 15, 2015

The survey asked several different questions about right-to-work laws, which would give all workers the ability to refrain from joining a union, including:

Some states have passed right-to-work or open shop laws that say each worker has the right to hold his job in a company, no matter whether he joins a labor union, or not. If you were asked to vote on such a law, would you vote for it or against it?

Vote for…………………………………………………………………….         62%

Vote against….…………………………………………………………          32%

Don’t know or decline to answer……………………………..                6%

Opting Out of Unions Gets Boost in States

Wall Street Journal Online, January 15, 2015

A new wave of bills that would allow workers to opt out of joining unions is expected from Maine to New Mexico as Republicans look to capitalize on statehouse gains to put new limits on organized labor.

Nearly half of U.S. states already have such laws—called “right to work” measures by backers—which allow employees in unionized workplaces to refrain from joining a union and paying dues.

Right-to-work rolls through Kentucky counties: Cumberland, Pulaski next?, January 15, 2015

The vote means Hardin County joins Warren, Simpson, Fulton and Todd as Kentucky’s right-to-work counties. Cumberland County Fiscal Court, which recently passed the first reading of a similar ordinance, is expected to finalize its own right-to-work policy on Feb. 10. The Pulaski County Fiscal Court on Tuesday held its first reading on a right-to-work ordinance, but did not vote. (While fiscal courts usually do vote on first readings, a vote is only required on a second reading.)

Pennsylvania Lawmaker Claims Yuengling Beer Is Banned From Tom Wolf Inauguration

Huffington Post Online, January 16, 2015

Pennsylvania is not among states with right-to-work laws. Labor leaders called for a boycott of Yuengling in 2013 after the brewery president announced his support for such a law.

Repeal of prevailing wage law top priority for GOP

Lansing State Journal Online, January 15, 2015

The Republican-controlled state Senate and House each signaled today that the repeal of Michigan’s prevailing wage law, which would be a blow to organized labor, will be a top priority in the Legislature this year.

Municipal pensions in Pennsylvania facing combined $7.7 billion debt

Morning Call Online, January 14, 2015

The bills are not quick fixes, said Richard J. Schuettler, executive director of the Pennsylvania Municipal League. But they would help reduce taxpayer costs by precluding municipalities and unions from negotiating pensions as part of collective bargaining agreements, he said.

The combined municipal debt is a drop in the bucket, however, compared with the more than $50 billion debt load carried by the pension plans for state workers and teachers. The Legislature has failed to pass bills addressing that, such as putting new teachers and state workers into corporate-like 401(k) retirement plans.

Tennessee auto industry hits the accelerator: Nissan, GM, VW find ‘best employees’ here

Tennessee Ledger Online, January 16, 2015

Tennessee’s automotive industry is growing for the same reasons manufacturers located here three decades ago, including low taxes and right-to-work laws, skilled and hardworking employees, a logistical advantage most states don’t have and infrastructure such as interstates, railroads and airports, according to Clint Brewer, spokesman for the Tennessee Economic and Community Development Department.

Public-Sector Union Fixes for the States, January 16, 2015

Greater transparency is the first step toward making government more accountable to the public. While every state has some kind of law requiring that the public’s business be performed in the open, these laws normally do not apply to collective-bargaining negotiations between the government and unions. In fact, the majority of states have little to no law relating to transparency in public-sector collective-bargaining sessions, according to a recent Goldwater Institute report.

U.S. shippers cancel overnight loaders at California ports, January 14, 2015

Management has accused the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) of orchestrating slowdowns to bolster its leverage at the bargaining table in the talks that have been under way for eight months.

Ohio lost interstate migration battle again in 2014

Ohio, January 14, 2015

More families moved out of Ohio than moved into the state last year, according to reports from three of the nation’s largest moving companies.

“I wish Governor Kasich would fight as hard on issues like right-to-work and less government spending as he does for expanding Medicaid and hiking the severance tax. Ohio’s private sector employers and taxpayers sure could use his zeal where it really matters to them.”