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*** UPDATED x1 *** This just in…

Wednesday, Jul 29, 2015

* The Rauner administration and AFSCME have reached an agreement not to lock out or strike until at least September 30th.

* Click the pic to see a larger version of the agreement…

*** UPDATE *** From AFSCME…

The terms of our existing agreement with the state have been temporarily extended through at least Sept. 30. This temporary extension underscores our union’s commitment to reaching a fair agreement with no disruption to state services, and gives us the ability to keep working toward an agreement in the weeks to come.

Even so, the parties remain very far apart on many basic issues as a result of the Rauner Administration’s continued extreme demands that would undermine public services, strip the rights of public service workers, reduce access to health care and make it impossible to keep pace with the rising cost of living.

At the same time, reports have revealed that the Rauner Administration is soliciting strike breakers, including retired state employees and potentially the Illinois National Guard. These actions suggest the Rauner Administration is planning a work stoppage that would be counter to the public interest.

In recent days the Governor’s public comments have changed in tone, forgoing the confrontational tenor of earlier remarks. We hope his Administration’s actions will comport with that new tone—such as making real progress at the bargaining table, halting the recruitment of strike breakers, or enacting Senate Bill 1229 to provide a final recourse of arbitration to settle differences between the parties without disrupting public services.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

76 Comments
  1. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:44 pm:

    Whew!

    Good news for both to get some sort of agreement.


  2. - Norseman - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:45 pm:

    Another positive sign. The Machiavellian question is whether this was to avoid another distraction or a true desire to negotiate a fair agreement.


  3. - Wordslinger - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:46 pm:

    Blink.

    Next up, social service providers and MAP students.


  4. - How Ironic - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:47 pm:

    The Rauner Admin is like a leaky pressure cooker. Everytime they have some ‘leverage’ the keep letting it overheat, and relive the pressure.


  5. - LincolnLounger - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:47 pm:

    Nice to see some good news.


  6. - Huh? - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:47 pm:

    I thought it was a good idea to shut down state government. What happened? Was this another u-turn by the guy who never loses?


  7. - Centennial - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:47 pm:

    Good news for sure!

    But why not an ‘extension’ of AFCME contract like they did last month?


  8. - How Ironic - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:48 pm:

    Also, I think we misheard Rauner earlier when he said ‘he could take arrows’. What he actually said is ‘manages like a sparrow’. All over the place, with no sense of direction.


  9. - Tournaround Agenda - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:49 pm:

    Doomsday averted, at least for a while.


  10. - Stones - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:50 pm:

    The most interesting paragraph of that document discusses the submission of impasse to the ILRB. That would easily extend this agreement past Sept 30.


  11. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:50 pm:

    Centennial, this is the same basic agreement as the last one.


  12. - Concerned - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:50 pm:

    Starting to look like RNUG’s prediction of October will be very close to the mark.

    The cynic in me tells me that the Governor’s office hasn’t lined up enough replacement workers to implement the lock out they want. But for today, I’ll drop my cynicism and congratulate both sides for allowing cooler heads to prevail, at least for the next couple of months.


  13. - AC - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:51 pm:

    Could it be that the Rauner administration wants to appear to be reasonable days before a possible override of a no strike no lockout bill?


  14. - anon. - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:51 pm:

    AFSCME caves again. The Union bosses know they can’t successfully strike and the members are lucky the courts said it is ok to pay them.


  15. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:52 pm:

    “Take us to DEFCON 4″ - IL National Guard.


  16. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:53 pm:

    Great news. Looks like they both want to let him override the no-strike/lockout bill and see how the override vote comes out. That’s going to be stressful.


  17. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:53 pm:

    I mean let him veto the bill and see how the override vote comes out.


  18. - A guy - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:54 pm:

    Well how about that. 2 days in a row with some rational news. If this continues, it might even be called progress.


  19. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:54 pm:

    A lot more moderate than some would have you believe.


  20. - Centennial - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:54 pm:

    Ahhhhh… my bad.

    I thought this was just an agreement not to strike, period. Not a ‘contract extension.’


  21. - Wensicia - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:55 pm:

    It appears Rauner couldn’t get the coverage needed for a strike or lockout. This is good news, and smart of AFSCME to hold off on a strike.


  22. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:57 pm:

    ==
    But why not an ‘extension’ of AFCME contract like they did last month?==

    The contract was never “extended.”


  23. - Facts are Stubborn Things - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:57 pm:

    Suspect a pay freeze with changes in step increases with small increases in health care costs and the dropping of many of the administrations non financial demands will be the ultimate agreement.


  24. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:58 pm:

    ==I thought this was just an agreement not to strike, period. Not a ‘contract extension.’==

    It is. And so was the agreement back in June.


  25. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 1:59 pm:

    Thank a loving God for this.


  26. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:01 pm:

    Attention IL National Guard:

    “Operation Pencil Pusher” has been scrubbed. Unless otherwise ordered, return to your “Fail-Safe” state agencies on September 29th and await further orders at that time.


  27. - LINK - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:01 pm:

    LOL. Here I was concerned that it was too quiet less than an hour ago and behold! Thank you Mr. Miller.


  28. - Aldyth - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:03 pm:

    A bit of good news from Illinois government.
    That’s hard to come by, these days.


  29. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:04 pm:

    And as the clock ticks down in two months, the same kill-the-middle-class provisions will be demanded by Rauner. This is going nowhere.


  30. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:05 pm:

    “AFSCME caves again. The Union bosses know they can’t successfully strike and the members are lucky the courts said it is ok to pay them.”

    Rauner is a terribly weak negotiater. Clearly in bad faith and his blustery offer/negotiation included terms that were not allowed to be part of this contract negotiatioin such as pensions demands and coercion. He will either have to remove them or lose before ILRB. He holds no cards and basically just folded his bluff.


  31. - The Dude Abides - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:06 pm:

    @anon. What are you talking about? AFSCME does not want to strike. I had lunch with one of my in laws over the weekend. He is on the bargaining committee and told me that they have no intention on striking, which I already figured. He said that they don’t want to be locked out either but if they were locked out they would be eligible for unemployment.


  32. - Omega Man - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:08 pm:

    More time for the retirees to realize that they need to step up to support AFSCME now (calling senators/reps, showing up for rallys, pickets, etc.)


  33. - Me too - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:10 pm:

    All this means is that he will pretend to bargain in good faith until September 30. Then he imposed last best offer and union bosses to strike or accept. Not sure how one can voluntarily go to a lower tier when an offer was imposed.


  34. - Beaner - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:12 pm:

    If the `Tolling Agreement’ to extend the contract were not in place, could State Employees be paid?

    Did not the St. Clair Court rule State Employees must be paid, in part, because there was a contract in place?

    If I understand this, Rauner and the Comptroller can’t pay anyone without a budget (`cept court decrees, State statues, special exceptions). Further, they cannot even pay tens of thousands of State employees all over the State without at least a contract. If Rauner does not extend the contract he is going to own paychecks not going out. He has spent a lot of time saying how much he wants to pay all those State employees.


  35. - a drop in - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:12 pm:

    I think I see a pattern. The Governor pushes and pushes to get the opposition (Madigan, unions) to do something stupid and when they don’t, he backs down.

    I may be wrong, but.


  36. - Me too - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:14 pm:

    Then he imposes last best offer and union votes to strike or not. Oops. It is funny that autocorrect went straight to union bosses though. I smell a conspiracy.


  37. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:14 pm:

    “Then he imposed last best offer and union bosses to strike or accept”

    Not how it works. Union will say they are at an impasse and the matter will go before ILRB and the “he will pretend to bargain in good faith until September 30″ will force binding arbitration due to his duplicity.


  38. - Team Sleep - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:14 pm:

    The agreement hammered out between Governor Rauner and Teamsters Local 700 - which is also likely to be the terms for other Teamsters Locals - would be in everyone’s best interests.


  39. - Kippax Blue - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:15 pm:

    This should be a moot point if/when SB 1229 is signed or overridden.


  40. - LBJ - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:18 pm:

    My guess is that AFSCME has been pressuring their GOP friends in the G.A. to help them avoid a strike/lockout situation. AFSCME has spent decades working on GOP relationships and it shows.


  41. - Anony - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:20 pm:

    i don’t see that this clarifies the status of employee pay. Also, workers can’t rally around a union which continually fails to pay more than lip service to “organizing” in order and to providing workers with any option to caving. Sad to say, but Rauner will use this extra time more effectively to put the State ducks in order.


  42. - The Dude Abides - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:22 pm:

    @LBJ that’s correct. When I talked to my brother in law over the weekend who’s on the bargaining committee he did say that they have been in discussion with several GOP members of the GA seeking assistance. Obviously one of those would be Poe.


  43. - Milootis - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:27 pm:

    The pro/tech Teamsters have been offered a deal similar to the Local 700 deal. Wages frozen for 4yrs,everything else remaining status quo except they would move from state administered healthcare to a Teamster administered plan.


  44. - Me too - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:30 pm:

    That is how it works. The ilrb only determines if impasse exists. There is no provision for binding arbitration. If impasse exists union votes on last offer. If they vote it down, a strike is called. If they vote it up, there’s no reason for a lockout. An impasse is only in govs interest since the offer as of now is worse than continuing under old contract terms. If you look into it, you’ll see I’m right. Only if both sides agree to mediation will that be an option and will likely be nonbinding.


  45. - Skeptic - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    Anon and Anony: Your claims that this is AFSCME “caving” have me completely baffled. This agreement doesn’t say that any of Rauner’s demands have been agreed on. In fact, it’s just as possible that *none* of Rauner’s demands have been met, but at least they’re still talking. We don’t know how it’s going to turn out. For me (as a union member) the fact that there’s some sort of progress is the best news I could expect for now.


  46. - Beaner - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:33 pm:

    Team Sleep - The Teamsters handle their own healthcare. So they were not forced into the ACA Bronze Plan. They were also allowed Step raises. So when an individual is hired, they pay them 70% or so of top salary and each year for 6 or 8 years they can give them a raise, until they are at full journeyman scale. No Teamster was required to agree to change Pension Tiers, which the SC ruled against and is coersion and not a fair labor practice.
    The agreements are not both apples. More like an apple and a nectarine.


  47. - Oshawott - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:38 pm:

    Is there anything in this agreement or the tenants of good faith bargaining that would prevent Rauner from executive ordering changes in working conditions and\or compensation for union state employees?


  48. - A Jack - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:40 pm:

    I suspect that he wants more time for his turn-around agenda to get passed. If the contract gets signed before the turn-around agenda is passed, he is stuck with a four year contract.

    I would imagine that his next step is to veto SB1229 saying that it is not needed with this new agreement. However I hope the GA has the good sense to see through his ploy and override the veto.


  49. - Me too - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:41 pm:

    Also, the parties have agreed to negotiate until impasse or 9/30 whichever is later. No impasse can be declared until 9/30, and then only if ILRB agrees impasse exists. Again, the union doesn’t want an impasse. If management’s offer was smaller raises than desired vs Union’s proposal of larger ones, they might want an impasse rather than losing out on raises. There is no other reason they’d want an impasse though.


  50. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:42 pm:

    Including coercion and pensions in the AFSMCE bargaining is unfair practice. Here is what happens next

    Q. What remedies may the ALJ order when it determines that an unfair labor practice has been committed?

    A. The Administrative Law Judge can order the Respondent take whatever action is necessary to “effectuate the purposes of the Act.” As far as is possible, the Board attempts to “restore the status quo ante;” that is, to place the parties in the same position they were in before the unfair labor practice occurred. Often, the Administrative Law Judge will require the Respondent to post a notice that it has violated the Act and that it will cease and desist from engaging in the unfair labor practice. Depending on the nature of the unfair labor practice, other remedies might include ordering the Respondent to reinstate employees, with or without back pay; to rescind a work rule or policy; or to engage in good-faith bargaining.


  51. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:42 pm:

    To the Update,

    Hi “ck”-

    Even if it sounds swell to say that having the Illinois National Guard taking over the state agencies isn’t off the table, next time, try to avoid that altogether. Until there is an agreement, you’re gonna hear that over and over, and walking it back only gives credibility that it’s insane. For next time, k?

    Thanks!
    ow


  52. - commentator - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:43 pm:

    CMS issued a RFP a day ago for temporary staff services throughout Illinois excluding Chicago area. It may be routine contract - or they may be gearing up for replacement workers.


  53. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:44 pm:

    ==Is there anything in this agreement or the tenants of good faith bargaining that would prevent Rauner from executive ordering changes in working conditions and\or compensation for union state employees?==

    That would definitely meet the definition of not bargaining in good faith. It would take the Labor Relations Board about 2 seconds to make that determination.


  54. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:45 pm:

    == It may be routine contract==

    It is. I know in this atmosphere everything is suspect but this is routine.


  55. - Team Sleep - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:48 pm:

    Beaner - but that agreement can still be used as a template.

    I have a hard time believing that Governor Rauner would sign SB 1229 into law.


  56. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    “If management’s offer was smaller raises than desired vs Union’s proposal of larger ones, they might want an impasse rather than losing out on raises.” Laughing at the smaller raises being offered.


  57. - walker - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:51 pm:

    Beat him up for being stiff-necked, then beat him up for giving an inch.

    Let’s just take it as a small positive hint.


  58. - Omega Man - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:56 pm:

    It’s obvious to me that King Kong (Rauner) has his hands full with Godzilla (Madigan) right now. Once the lizard is deposed, it’s “game on” with Mothra (Unions) - “Destroy All Monsters!”


  59. - A Jack - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:57 pm:

    Rauner doesn’t have to sign SB1229 into law. He just has to lose it on his desk till next Wednesday. But I do expect him to veto it in the next few days.


  60. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 2:59 pm:

    ==halting the recruitment of strike breakers==

    The National Guard thing was just goofy. But I have to say that making preparations to continue state operations in the event of a strike is just good planning. Any organization that wouldn’t do that in this particular situation would be derelict in their duties.


  61. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 3:00 pm:

    http://www.state.il.us/ilrb/subsections/arbitration/IntArbAwardSummary.htm

    Tons of “interest arbitrations” out there, Me too. Unions will be just fine with impasse.


  62. - Norseman - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 3:11 pm:

    === Rauner doesn’t have to sign SB1229 into law. He just has to lose it on his desk till next Wednesday. ===

    Jack, either your mistaking this for the one month budget or you don’t know your Illinois legislative process. Failing to act on the bill will result in it becoming law. Which would be ok with me.


  63. - Me too - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 3:13 pm:

    Anon, I was simply providing the only rationale for the union wanting an impasse. Well there’s that and if they just really want to strike and are certain it is an unfair labor practice strike rather than an economic one.

    With things as they are it is in the union’s interest to keep continuing the contract rather than accepting any offer that reduces their pay. It isn’t hard to understand.


  64. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 3:19 pm:

    Me too–

    Click on that link to ilrb/arbitration summary. You will find several on there where AFSME had impasses with state over contract bargaining that all ended in their favor. I don’t think they fear impasse battles which lead to interest arbitration where they always win.


  65. - Me too - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 3:30 pm:

    Interest arbitration only applies to essential employees who can’t strike.


  66. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 3:49 pm:

    “Interest arbitration only applies to essential employees who can’t strike.” and when their are unfair labor practices. Such as these AFSMCE “interest arbitration awards.

    http://www.state.il.us/ilrb/subsections/pdfs/ArbitrationAwards/State%20of%20Illinois%20&%20AFSCME,%20pay%20raises.pdf

    http://www.state.il.us/ilrb/subsections/pdfs/ArbitrationAwards/State%20of%20Illinois%20&%20AFSCME,%20Layoffs%20&%20Facility%20Closures.pdf


  67. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 4:20 pm:

    Look at the State of Iowa, Colorado, Mass., Maine, etc. Employees are prohibited from striking and the employer cannot lock them out. Many disputes go to interest arbitration and then the contract is settled.


  68. - Demoralized - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 4:46 pm:

    Can somebody help me out here? The agreement says it is good through September 30 OR until impasse is reached, whichever comes LATER. Doesn’t that imply that unless one or the other declares an impasse that this agreement could extend beyond September 30?


  69. - Formerly Known As... - Wednesday, Jul 29, 15 @ 5:05 pm:

    @Demoralized looks to be right that this may be good beyond September 30.

    Regardless, kudos to both AFSCME and the administration for coming to at least a temporary agreement while they continue negotiations.

    Now if only the GA could do the same. #Broken


  70. - Hummm..... - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 9:06 am:

    Don’t forget….

    Rauner has a “pen and a phone”, just like Obama. Rauner can do just about anything with an executive order.


  71. - Wordslinger - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 9:11 am:

    –Rauner can do just about anything with an executive order.–

    Like what?


  72. - Hummm..... - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 9:14 am:

    Anything Obama can (or has) done. How about change/over rule existing law, for starters. If Obama can do it and democrats applaud, why can’t Republicans? Or is it somehow different when a Republican does it?


  73. - Wordslinger - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 9:19 am:

    Humm, the use of executive orders are set by law and are different at the national and state levels. The TV man probably didn’t tell you that.


  74. - Hummm..... - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 9:29 am:

    Actually, they are not. The SCOTUS has unanamoisly told Obama, 6 times, Executive orders can not be used to countermand law. But democrats don’t care.
    Funny how Executive orders are all powerful when a democrat uses them, but unconstitutional when a Republican uses them


  75. - Wordslinger - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 9:41 am:

    Humm, you’re doing swell repeating the TV man goofy talking points and getting your victim on, but it really has nothing to do with anything regarding gubernatorial powers in Illinois.


  76. - Hummm..... - Thursday, Jul 30, 15 @ 10:24 am:

    Actually, I’m repeating (paraphraising) what the SCOUS said. But we all know that the SCOUS only matters when it’s opinions comport with “liberal correctless”.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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* How the Blockchain Can Transform Government
* A college program that ‘never ends’
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* Gov. Rauner meets one of oldest living WWII veterans
* IDOT reopening lanes where possible for July 4 travel
* Bellock named DHFS director
* Follow-Up Samples from the Illinois River Show No Microcystins
* Illinois Department of Public Health Heat Safety Tips

  
* Xiaomi Mi 8 Explorer likely arriving on July 24
* Xiaomi Mi Max 3 screen and battery confirmed, other specs leaked
* ​Seven cloud vendors lining up for government security clearance
* Telstra makes 5G phone call across commercial network with Ericsson and Intel
* Cryptocurrency reality checks and the coming boom
* Rolls-Royce air taxi idea has propulsion but needs airframe
* How to validate your brilliant idea and launch your business with Growth Hacking

* White Sox Minor League Update: July 15, 2018
* Six Pack of Stats: White Sox 10, Royals 1
* Basabe blasts 102.3-mph pitch for World Team
* Chicago White Sox, Charlotte Knights fans await the next big...
* Slumping Abreu still the right choice to represent White Sox...
* Abreu leads White Sox into second half vs. M's
* White Sox prospects Luis Basabe, Dylan Cease shine in All-St...


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