A press release from Governor Bruce Rauner:
ICYMI: Senate should reject forced arbitration bill
This week the Senate is expected to vote on HB 580, and if passed, it would cost taxpayers $3 billion. It will deepen Illinois’ fiscal crisis even further, squeeze social services, and, ironically, lead to layoffs. The following is excerpt of an editorial in the Herald & Review explaining why the Senate should reject this legislation.
(House Bill 580) is bad public policy for a whole host of reasons. First, it is clearly and narrowly aimed at Rauner. This bill applies only to collective bargaining agreements during Rauner’s current term and then would expire.
The bill could also be potentially expensive to taxpayers. AFSCME’s last proposal, according to the governor’s office, would cost the state $3.6 billion over four years. That’s money Illinois clearly doesn’t have. AFSCME is proposing four-year raises ranging from 11.5 to 29 percent, a 37.5-hour workweek and five weeks of vacation. A similar bill was approved by the House and Senate last year, but the House could not override the governor’s veto…
What’s important is a fair contract that the state can afford. The Rauner administration has come to new contract agreements with 17 other unions, including the Teamsters. The Teamsters, understanding the state’s financial position, agreed to a four-year salary freeze in return for incentive bonuses.
The General Assembly would be wise to reject House Bill 580. The bill would tie Rauner’s hands and possibly saddle the state with a union contract it cannot afford. AFSCME needs to understand the state’s financial situation and settle for a contract similar to the Teamsters.