Illinois Governor Pat Quinn Blocks Scheduled Raises
PAY CUTS: Many public sector union leaders in Hawaii expected to have an easier time negotiating with Democratic Governor Neil Abercrombie than with his Republican predecessor, Linda Lingle. But so far, contract negations have been far from smooth, reports the Honolulu Star Advertiser. Abercrombie took the unprecedented step of unilaterally imposing the state’s final contract offer on the Hawaii State Teachers Association, which includes a 5 percent pay cut and increased health contributions. Tony Gill, a labor attorney and the chairman of Oahu Democrats, told the Advertiser, “This is the largest and most important doctrinal innovation in Hawaii labor relations law in a generation. Period.”
DUES-PAYING MEMBERS: The Maryland chapter of AFSCME will begin collecting dues from non-members this month, a move that is expected to double the $4.7 million that the union collects from members, reports the Baltimore Sun . Currently, only 8,000 of the 21,000 workers represented by AFSCME in contract negotiations pay dues, but 2009 “Fair Share” legislation passed largely along party lines allows unions to deduct dues from the paychecks of non-members they represent. (The union opted not to implement the fees last year because workers were already being hit by pay freezes and unpaid days off.) State workers represented by AFSCME will see between $10.80 and $14.96 deducted from their biweekly paychecks.
UNUSED MINUTES: A report from Louisiana ‘s Legislative Auditor found that the state spends almost $591,000 on cell phones and wireless devices that go unused by state employees. A quarter of the $8 million worth of mobile devices issued to state employees weren’t used for at least 10 months last year. Some of the unused devices are intended for disaster recovery purposes, while others just weren’t monitored, according to the audit. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal’s office told the Times-Picayune that state agencies will develop policies to better monitor use and cancel devices that aren’t needed.
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