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Rauner, unions extend contract one month

Thursday, Jun 25, 2015

* From the governor’s office…

Joint Statement from Jason Barclay, General Counsel to the Governor, and from Mike Newman, Deputy Director of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, Council 31 (“AFSCME Council 31”):

“Today AFSCME Council 31 and the Governor’s Office reached an agreement that precludes the possibility of a strike or lockout for a one-month period after the state’s collective bargaining agreement with AFSCME Council 31 expires on June 30. This agreement preserves all legal and contractual rights of the parties as of the contract expiration date. More importantly, it allows both sides to continue to negotiate during the month of July without the threat of disruption to important public services.”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - RNUG - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:45 pm:

    Reason prevails. Good news.

  2. - How Ironic - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:45 pm:

    Who bet August on a signed budget? I think they won.

  3. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:47 pm:


    I’m going to be half-full on this, no one can stop me.

    I always thought the Rauner Administration had 3 tasks, if completed, Rauner could claim real victories;

    FY2015 “fix” - mixed review, but ironed out

    FY2016 - in limbo, “pending”

    The AFSCME contract - this extension makes me see this as a positive. They are actually trying. I haveta believe that. Thus is good.

  4. - newbie - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:48 pm:


  5. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:54 pm:

    This is good news. This avoids immediate chaos and gives everyone a little breathing room. This takes away immediate uncertainty for many state workers. It also protects Illinois residents and those who benefit from state funds/services.

  6. - Person 8 - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:57 pm:

    Now the union just needs to do this 47 more times!

  7. - relocated - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:59 pm:

    I think Rauner may be coming to understand that if this all blows up he is going to own it.

  8. - Arthur Andersen - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 6:59 pm:

    It’s a start.

  9. - Moby - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:01 pm:

    So, this prevents a lockout or a strike for one month, but we’re still facing a shutdown, correct?

  10. - RunAground Agenda - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:15 pm:

    Yay RNUG! Thanks for checking in! One of my favorite commenters.

  11. - newbie - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:17 pm:

    Hope this a good NEW start. I think it is fools’s gold. I am in a bad spot. 1) No budget 2) No contract possibly 3) My facility: The Hardin County Work Camp is on the Rauner chopping block.

    I hope this gets worked out by both sides.

  12. - RunAground Agenda - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:18 pm:

    I’m due for a service increase August 1…I’d love it if this meant that would happen!

  13. - Lincoln Lad - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:18 pm:

    Why do I think this agreement makes the shutdown solely a budget issue? No confusion with the agreement ending. Might be a bit of theater for the public at large?

  14. - Wensicia - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:23 pm:

    Perhaps Rauner can only handle one crisis at a time…

  15. - Facts are stubborn things - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:28 pm:

    Rauner is concerned about being seen in the extreme and not in moderation and being reasonable —– the Mjm narrative is having an affect.

  16. - Facts are stubborn things - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:28 pm:

    You still need a budget

  17. - Almost the Weekend - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:30 pm:

    Gives Rauner administration more time. Smart move by both parties. Still think AFSCME is putting off the inevitable until August now. And when they go on strike during the Illinois State Fair AFSCME will look even worse.

  18. - Wordslinger - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:32 pm:

    The ice broke yesterday with the governor signing the schools approp.

    There’s a lot of heavy lifting to be done, but the governor is now productively engaged.

    Had to happen at some point.

  19. - Ducky LaMoore - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:39 pm:

    Sounds reasonable. It is amazing what seems like progress when you set the bar as low as I have.

  20. - Roadiepig - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:42 pm:

    Wordslinger- I hope you are right, for both the workers who a actually do the hard jobs for this state and the folks who’s well being depends on the state helping them out. If this is just for show, it will come out soon enough by both sides actions.

    But good news for a day…

  21. - VanillaMan - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:45 pm:

    I don’t trust him anymore.
    He’s turned me into a cynic.
    So I’m on watch until he proves he has figured his job out.

  22. - russo mcnon - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 7:49 pm:

    So 1229 went to the Governor on June 4th and suppose it’s vetoed on August 4th. How long after that would a vote to override the veto take place?
    Are the chances good they can get the 71 votes to override since they only got 68 last time?

  23. - Rich Miller - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:01 pm:

    ===He’s turned me into a cynic.===

    Nah. He’s caused you to reassess some of your partisan beliefs. He’s made you a better commenter. Undoubtedly a better person.

  24. - Macbeth - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:01 pm:

    He’s caused you to reassess some of your partisan beliefs. He’s made you a better commenter. Undoubtedly a better person.


  25. - Wordslinger - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:11 pm:

    GS, you in the right place? Your comments seem out of place.

  26. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:17 pm:

    ===He’s made you a better commenter.===

    I’d agree. More thoughtful for sure, and more thought provoking in the best ways.

  27. - Lincoln Lad - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:20 pm:

    It’s now s contest on which side can look most moderate. The battle is for public opinion.

  28. - Norseman - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:47 pm:

    It’s promising, but I’m not holding my breath. We’ve had promising before only to be disappointed.

  29. - AC - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:49 pm:

    Rauner should be commended for taking an important step toward compromise. I’m stunned. It seemed as if Rauner was itching for a fight with as many people as he could, as quickly as he could. Now, I’m just a tiny bit hopeful. I haven’t felt that since the transition team was announced.

  30. - Truthteller - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:55 pm:

    No surprise that AFSCME agreed to an extension. They’ve done it before to avoid the disruption of services. Question still does Rauner want to avoid disruption in the long run, or is it just for now? Will he continue to insist on items that are part of his ideological agenda,or simply try to deal with issues affecting the budget? That will tell us what he’s really up to

  31. - walker - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 8:59 pm:

    Good move.

    Hope the roller coaster begins to level out some.

  32. - Holdingontomywallet - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 9:15 pm:

    So Rauner really isn’t the anti-Christ? It was just regular negotiating and political posturing? I am shocked….

  33. - Anon - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 9:34 pm:

    That is good news, are they willing to work for free?

  34. - Norseman - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 9:39 pm:

    Before folks put Rauner on a pedestal for agreeing to a one-month talks extension, has anyone really seen a change in Rauner’s fundamental anti-union beliefs. I haven’t. I fear this is either an effort to avoid another distraction during the budget war or an effort to bolster the fallacy that he’s negotiating in good faith.

  35. - Lincoln Lad - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:18 pm:

    Norseman has it right. The bigger fight is with the Speaker for now.

  36. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:20 pm:

    - Norseman -,

    I’m trying to be half full here… lol

  37. - Norseman - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:45 pm:

    I know Willy. I’ve been hoping for a long time that Rauner would prove me wrong. Let’s hope this truly is a glass half full. ;)

  38. - Mama - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:48 pm:

    Since there is still no budget, will they get paid while they continue to work?

  39. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:50 pm:

    - Norseman - we are going to know soon enough how all this is going down.

    Meanwhile, where is Leader Durkin?

  40. - Anonymous - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:54 pm:

    I don’t know if this is superstar thinking or my governor going rouge using his own critical thinking? He would really throw everyone for a loop if backed a millionaire’s tax on himself.

  41. - Norseman - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 10:59 pm:

    Good question. As they say, his silence is deafening.

  42. - Oswego Willy - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 11:06 pm:

    You were On It. What does the staffer say/write to help GOP members on that.

    Which is why I am taking this move as half full.

  43. - RNUG - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 11:30 pm:

    == Who bet August on a signed budget? ==

    I still say October before it is all finalized.

  44. - William Jennings Bryan - Thursday, Jun 25, 15 @ 11:42 pm:

    Organization is the mobilization of bias. What is going g on behind the scenes?

  45. - Jamie - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 12:42 am:

    Can anyone answer if we will get our step raises????

  46. - DuPage Dave - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 5:21 am:

    Well now we know when everyone hits the sack….

  47. - Tango and Cash - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 5:29 am:

    I would say the extension was contingent on no step increases while the step freeze proposal is one the table

  48. - AC - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 6:20 am:

    No one believes Bruce Rauner suddenly became a modern incarnation of Pete Seeger and Mother Jones. He’s not about to deliver the equivalent of the Cross of Gold speech to a large audience. What he did was make a small, but positive step toward compromise, nothing more, nothing less.

  49. - Allen D - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 7:18 am:

    What a crock, IL is broke, what does everyone not understand, you can’t have everything… I say LOCKOUT and strike. let the chips fall where they may.

  50. - AC - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 7:28 am:

    Why does it seem like there’s been a recent increase in the number of comments recently that seem to be encouraging conflict? Moving away from strike and toward compromise, with both parties sacrifing something is the path forward. I like this state, it’s interesting, dynamic, diverse and worth saving. No one who cares about Illinois wants to encourage its destruction.

  51. - Former Merit Comp Slave - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 7:35 am:

    While contract extensions have been fairly common in the past, i am pleasantly surprised to see this one. Some glimmer of hope……..

  52. - A Jack - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:00 am:

    I would say it’s probably because he needs the end of the fiscal year processing done to cleanly close the books.

  53. - Tha missin g - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:02 am:

    I agree with Allen D. During that time the state workers and their family and friends should stop spending money in Illinios. Just stay home. I bet the “job creators” would love that since this is, after all, a supply side economy.

  54. - Allen D - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:03 am:

    The thing is Illinois is and has been broke for a ling time, the union (and I am a member) seems to want want want, and that is ok to ask for the moon but when it isn’t there to provide you can’t expect the state to just institute Tax to cover everything every time. that isn’t right.

  55. - Anonymous - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:19 am:

    My hope is that this was done with the understanding that he’ll veto the no-strike/lockout bill at the end of July and with the understanding that the GA has the votes to override his veto. This gives him the cover to say he tried to stop it.

  56. - Snucka - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:27 am:

    =Nah. He’s caused you to reassess some of your partisan beliefs. He’s made you a better commenter. Undoubtedly a better person.=
    Reporting from the sunny side of the street, I’m Rich Miller.


  57. - tobor - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:37 am:

    Nothing has changed.

  58. - Skeptic - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:50 am:

    Even I’m a bit relieved, at least we can breathe for a month. But as they say, they just kicked the can down the road, and we’re waiting for the other shoe to drop. But alas I couldn’t think of any other metaphors to mix in.

    As for you fellow members who are concerned about your raises and steps and all that…please, give it a rest. Take it for what it’s worth. Status quo compared to nothing *is* a raise. Wait a second….WAIT ONE GOLL DARNED SECOND…I just used Rauner logic. And they say a leopard can’t change his stripes.

  59. - A Jack - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 8:52 am:

    Yes, Allen, the state has underfunded the pension for about 100 years. One way they could have saved money was by not hiring you since by hiring you, the state was promising s pension they couldn’t afford without raising taxes. So as a good citizen, you should give up that state job that the state cannot afford.

  60. - Nick Name - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:00 am:

    @ 7:30 p.m. yesterday:

    “And when they go on strike during the Illinois State Fair AFSCME will look even worse.”

    AFSCME is not going to strike. It was AFSCME who pushed the no strike-no lockout bill, still unsigned.

  61. - PublicServant - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:00 am:

    I think that you guys are missing the fact that if there is no budget agreement in place, whether the contract has been extended is irrelevant, since the state comptroller won’t have permission to cut the checks. I hope that I’m wrong about that, but isn’t that what Ms. Munger warned last week?

  62. - ??? - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:05 am:

    PublicServant, that’s my understanding, too. I think the extension of the current contract just means no strike or lockout, but with no appropriation authority for FY16, the Comptroller still can’t issue checks so employees are still in danger of not getting paid after July 15th if no budget agreement is reached before then.

  63. - Grandson of Man - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:07 am:

    The point is that this is a good deal in these very uncertain times. What choice does anyone have at this point? I’m glad the two sides agreed to extend negotiations and contract protections.

    On another note, SCOTUS just ruled in favor of gay marriage, I see. Awesome!

  64. - phocion - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:08 am:

    ==AFSCME is not going to strike. It was AFSCME who pushed the no strike-no lockout bill, still unsigned.==

    Nick Name, do you really think AFSCME pushed that bill because of their desire not to strike?

  65. - Stones - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:10 am:

    With no budget in place, paychecks will not be issued on the 15th - contract extension or not. Although I do view this as a positive I wouldn’t exactly be celebrating right now.

  66. - Grandson of Man - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:10 am:

    “Nick Name, do you really think AFSCME pushed that bill because of their desire not to strike?”

    Yes, AFSCME pushed this bill to not strike. A strike could be very hard not only on thousands of state workers, but also on Illinois residents. It’s a very good idea in these very contentious times.

  67. - phocion - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:15 am:

    Grandson, I must respectfully highlight that AFSCME wants this law now because they have never had to actually bargain in good faith with previous administrations. Mandatory arbitration weakens management at the bargaining table, which in the past was always weak because previous administrations were the beneficiaries of union campaign contribution largesse. The bill will be vetoed, and its ability to survive an override attempt will be interesting to watch.

  68. - A Jack - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:19 am:

    Just like last time, the Comptroller can be court ordered to pay state employees. It’s not as if the cash isn’t there. The Comptroller just doesn’t have legal authority to expend funds without an approved budget or a court order.

  69. - ??? - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:33 am:

    A Jack - do you remember when “last time” was? I’m not asking to challenge you, I honestly can’t remember. I remember some years back getting one of those loans that Credit Union 1 was offering to state employees who needed assistance during a budget impasse, but I ended up not really needing it because the budget situation got revolved shortly after that. I thought the resolution was that the GA passed a temporary budget until an agreement was reached. I don’t remember the court order. I tried Googling it, but couldn’t really find anything on it. Maybe I’m using the wrong search terms.

  70. - Team Sleep - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 9:43 am:

    I understand why AFSCME members think SB 1229 is a good piece of legislation. But it should be a permanent bill - not one that sunsets after what AFSCME hopes will be Governor Rauner’s exit. And if Rauner wins reelection, then what? Does a pro-union legislator file lame duck legislation to extend the provisions another 4 years? What about 8? This is just as disingenuous as the same day voter registration lasting only through last November’s election.

  71. - RD55 - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 10:17 am:

    @phocion: AFSCME wants this law now because the gov isn’t bargaining in good faith. Rauneris once again at the extreme.

  72. - Theo's Houseboy - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 11:04 am:

    Nick Name- yes, the Bill was pushed by AFSCME. The union and its members do NOT want a strike or a lockout. They want a fair Union contract, and this bill allows them to go to binding arbitration to get that fair contract. Can’t see a reason why the governor wouldn’t sign it, if he really is serious about expediting the process and negotiating in good faith.

  73. - Theo's Houseboy - Friday, Jun 26, 15 @ 11:07 am:

    Phocion- all binding arbitration does is bring an unbiased party in to decide issues. If keeping management from attempting to impose their will or force a strike (which Rauner has said he would welcome) is taking their power away, then they have too much power in the first place.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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