Monday, May 16, 2011

Can you Spell U-N-I-O-N B-U-S-T-I-N-G?

House Bill 4059 (Substitute H-2)
Sponsor: Rep. Marty Knollenberg
Committee: Oversight, Reform, and Ethics
Revised First Analysis (3-15-11)

The bill, which amends the Public Employment Relations Act, would prohibit public employer contracts that pay union officials for time conducting union business.
In order to save public funds and cut unnecessary costs, legislation has been introduced to prohibit local government and school employers from paying release time for union officials to conduct union business.

The above is taken from the State's Legislative website.  I have been both a Union President in the City of Detroit and an Administrator in West Bloomfield.  We all know that we need good managers, good employees and working conditions fair to all. 

But if so much time is being spent on union activities that will lead to an inability to pay wages and provide services (give me a break), then management needs to negotiate in good faith, unions need to learn to ask for reasonable wages and benefits and both need to follow the contract once signed.  My experience on the Union side was that management made a habit of trying to ignore contract provisions on salaries and scheduling.  That caused grievances to be filed by the union.  That meant that union personnel needed to argue those grievances during working hours of management.  Why should union reps be docked pay for trying to enforce a legal agreement?

Oh, silly me.  We no longer need to follow contracts in Michigan.  We just send in a new manager and throw out the agreements.  If you haven't seen the Colbert Report on the new EM law, check it out here

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