SEARCH BLOG: ECONOMY and GOVERNMENT
Like Walker, Snyder confronted a massive—$2 billion —shortfall and demanded that public employees pick up 20 percent of the tab for their health care benefits. Like Walker, he reformed teacher tenure laws, giving schools more flexibility to recruit and promote good teachers. And like Walker, he ended automatic union-dues deductions from teacher paychecks.
Unlike Walker, however, Snyder did not launch a wholesale attack on the collective bargaining powers of all public unions, taking a more conciliatory approach. He even scolded his fellow Republicans who wanted to use their control of all branches of government to make Michigan a Right to Work state, no longer requiring private-sector workers to pay mandatory union dues as a condition of employment.To better appreciate this issue, you need to understand the tactics that unions are using to fill their coffers at the expense of the State and service providers. From the Mackinac Center For Public Policy:
MIDLAND — Michigan’s 60,000 home health care aides should no longer have so-called union dues skimmed from their subsidy checks as a result of an informal but binding opinion letter issued today by Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette. The opinion was issued in response to a request by Rep. Paul Opsommer, R-DeWitt, six weeks after Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation ending the stealth unionization. The Service Employees International Union has taken some $30 million from the state’s most vulnerable residents over the last six years, including more than $680,000 since the scheme was outlawed.
“This episode demonstrates how government-sector unions often act in ways that benefit themselves at the cost of taxpayers and their shanghaied members,” said Mackinac Center Legal Foundation Director Patrick J. Wright. “The independent contractors and family members who provide aid to the developmentally disabled were never government employees and should not have been paying dues in the first place.”
The SEIU was able to skim the so-called “dues” under a scheme that was concocted during the administration of Gov. Jennifer Granholm. An interlocal agreement between the Department of Community Health and the Tri-County Aging Consortium allowed for the creation of the Michigan Quality Community Care Council, which served as the shell employer for people who are actually self-employed independent contractors or, overwhelmingly, family members caring for loved ones.Yup, you got it. Independent service contractors... self-employed people, not state employees... who received money from the state for services were forced to pay dues to a union through automatic deductions for "representation" that 1) most were not aware of and 2) that did absolutely nothing except skim money off the top. $30,000,000 worth of skimming for nothing. And they continued to take the money even after legislation prohibiting such practices was signed into legislation! Yup, you got it. The law meant nothing to the "union."
That's the nature of unionism in Michigan.
Before you start to equate the Wisconsin issues with Michigan's, you should remember that Walker's approach was far more heavy-handed and to some extent, as discussed in previous posts, wenT too far. That has not been the case with Gov. Snyder.
Conservative Principles Or Unprincipled Conservatives