Thursday, Apr 24, 2014
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Recent Comments

yesqcy - City/Firefighters labor contract must be voted on again - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Very true, everyone has to have a first time. But what about the city attorney and the rest of the council? Nobody?
Mizzougrad - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Your right, the pensions that the city chose to underfund for years because they could, and now it's all our fault. For someone in business, don't understand how you do not understand the concept that you close a station, you don't just reassign the firefighters, because then there are no savings. You close a station because you want to lower the number of firefighters, period. You know…
topdown - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Once again, I will ask you: Do you understand business at all? The City can't print money. The police and fire pensions have thrown the entire system so far out of whack that the City can't make "want to" decisions; it is a "have to" situation. You can cry the blues all you want about the poor, poor firefighters, but their greed over the years has contributed greatly to this mess, so what…
topdown - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
I haven't read a single comment about laying off firefighters, except, perhaps, from your Chief. You are paid, and paid very well, to do a job. If you don't like it, quit. People will line up to take your spot. No one is complaining about the services you provide. The problem is cost. Why is it so hard to understand that the City coffers are not a bottomless pit? Your pensions have…
topdown - Quincy City Budget hearings and Council meeting - Quincy, IL News - QuincyJournal.com
Your condescending attitude is just plain insulting. Thousands and thousands of small business owners have suffered in this economy over the past decade or so. Should we all "reinvent" ourselves? What an idiotic statement! It is patently obvious to me from the comments you have made in different discussions that you have lived a life of privilege and have never given an honest day's work in…

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Supreme Court to Hear Case on Forced Unionization

3 months ago Bill McMorris, Washington Free Beacon

At question is law requiring Illinois home healthcare workers to pay SEIU dues

From Bill McMorris, Washington Free Beacon:

The Supreme Court will hear arguments about forced unionization among government workers on Tuesday in a case that could greatly curtail powerful labor groups.

At issue is an Illinois law crafted by imprisoned former Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D.) and enforced by his successor Pat Quinn (D.) that forces home healthcare workers, including family members caring for relatives, to pay union dues.

The state claims that the caregivers are government employees since patients receive taxpayer dollars through Medicaid and Medicare. But the issue is more complicated than who is signing the checks, according to lawyers for the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation (NRTWLDF), which is spearheading the challenge.

“The Illinois law only defines them as employees in terms of unionization and no other rights at all,” said NRTWLDF lawyer Bill Messenger. “This is a scheme for compulsory lobbying.”

The caregivers do not receive liability insurance coverage or retirement benefits that other government workers are entitled to, according to Messenger. If the court holds that state governments can force any secondary beneficiary of taxpayer dollars in the union, “vast swaths of the population” would end up paying union dues.

“All doctors or nurses who care for Medicare patients would have to join a union by that logic,” Messenger said. “What unions are looking at is trying to attach themselves to any kind of government funding.”

 Harris v. Quinn could be a defining case in labor law, according to labor experts.

Justin Wilson, managing director of labor watchdog Center for Union Facts, said that forcing healthcare workers to pay union dues has been a cash cow for public sector unions, which enjoy a larger membership than private unions. Michigan unions, for example, benefitted from a similar policy that was eliminated by GOP Gov. Rick Snyder and later rejected by voters in a 2012 ballot initiative.

“Home healthcare workers have been ripe sources for Service Employees International Union, as they represent the largest pool of untapped resources,” Wilson said. “There’s real money on the line for the unions.”

The case could extend beyond Illinois and home healthcare workers. Messenger is pushing the justices to overturn the 1977 Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, which allowed governments to enforce compulsory union membership as a condition of employment.

If he is successful, public employees across the country could withdraw from their unions in a manner akin to Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s labor reforms.

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