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React to Rauner vetoes

Saturday, Jul 23, 2016

* Background is here. Let’s start with the Illinois Chamber…

“The Illinois Chamber of Commerce supports Gov. Bruce Rauner’s amendatory veto of SB 2964 because as passed, it would have eliminated the voice of local government in determining local wage rates. That would have led to inflated costs for local public works projects and to a damper on local economies. The business community wants laws and policies that help Illinois become more attractive to the creation and retention of jobs in our state. Increasing project costs and the resulting increases in property taxes would not be good for the job climate.”

“SB 2964 would have required the Illinois Department of Labor to exclusively use collective bargaining agreements in its calculations of a given local area’s prevailing wage. Yet a study, The State of the Unions 2015, found that more than 60 percent of construction workers in Illinois are non-union. That means local rates could have been based on collective bargaining agreements several counties away.”

“We appreciate the governor’s recognition of the diversity of our state and the negative impact SB 2964 would have had on our state’s economic viability. The amendatory veto is consistent with the governor’s program to protect Illinois taxpayers, making Illinois more competitive for job growth.”

That bill passed with veto-proof majorities in both chambers. It attracted GOP votes in the House, but one of those Republican proponents, John Anthony, has since left for an administration job.

* IL AFL-CIO…

Illinois AFL-CIO President Michael T. Carrigan’s statement on Gov. Rauner’s vetoes of wage and benefits bills:

“Gov. Rauner has shown, once again, that his personal agenda is more important than the people of Illinois. Gov. Rauner’s amendatory vetoes of Senate Bills 2964, 2536 and 2931 House Bill 5764 continue his mission of eroding the middle class in Illinois by making it as difficult as possible to increase the wages of Illinois Working Families

“Prevailing wage laws ensure our tax dollars stay in our communities with local contractors and local workers. Senate Bill 2964 would have simplified ascertaining the prevailing wage for everyone. The governor says he supports local control, but when you don’t enforce prevailing wage laws, it is our local contractors and working families that lose. In vetoing Senate Bill 2536 and House Bill 5764 Governor Rauner refused to provide adequate wages to those who provide homemaker services to elderly and disabled residents. In his veto of Senate Bill 2931, Rauner argues that SEIU Home Health Care Workers were overpaid compared to similar workers in other states. But by refusing to pay workers a living wage, Rauner’s robber baron thinking hurts the elderly, their caregivers and Illinois businesses who benefit from consumers with disposable income.”

SB2536, SB2931 and HB5764 did not receive veto-proof majorities in the House.

* SEIU…

News is breaking that Bruce Rauner has vetoed House Bill 5764 and Senate Bills 2536 and 2931, which protect child care and home healthcare, respectively. In so doing he is continuing the Republican War on Women and People of Color that was on display in such relief at Donald Trump’s Cleveland convention.

Following are the responses of SEIU Healthcare Illinois President Keith Kelleher; SB 2536 sponsors Rep. Carol Ammons (D-Champaign) and Sen. Iris Martinez (D-Chicago); and SB 2931 sponsors Rep. Sonya Harper (D-Chicago) and Sen. Michael Hastings (D-Matteson).

Keith Kelleher:

“With the vetoes of legislation protecting child care and home healthcare for people with disabilities and seniors, Gov. Rauner continues the Republican war on working women, African-Americans and Latinos who depend on these programs to be in the workforce. Rauner also is forcing seniors and people with disabilities into more expensive institutionalization. As we have seen, Rauner’s draconian rules changes mean 55,000 fewer children receive child care and with his overtime policies, thousands of people with disabilities are in a nightmare period scrambling to find care. It’s up to our legislative allies now to stand up to this governor and try to repair what Rauner is ripping apart.

“What we saw at Donald Trump’s convention this week was a blur of intolerance and division. These vetoes show Bruce Rauner is bringing the spirit of Cleveland home to Illinois.”

(CHILD CARE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM BILL, SB 2536)

Rep. Carol Ammons: “While other states expand child care and provide more opportunities for parents to work, Illinois under Bruce Rauner is headed in the wrong direction and in ways that disproportionately harm women, African Americans and Latinos. I hope my colleagues will join me in standing up for children and the workforce who cares for them.”

Sen. Iris Martinez: “Properly caring for the child care workforce is just one step in restoring the Child Care Assistance Program. This is an important program for employees and employers alike, and I will continue to fight to repair the damage done by Bruce Rauner, which has been part of his larger war on women and people of color.”

(DEPARTMENT OF REHABILITATIVE SERVICES BILL, SB 2931)

Rep. Sonya Harper: “The chaos that Gov. Rauner’s overtime policy has caused consumers with disabilities has put a spotlight on the stresses on the caregiving workforce and in ways that disproportionately affect women and people of color. The bill that Gov. Rauner vetoes would have strengthened and stabilized care in Illinois and it is a disappointment that Rauner has chosen instead to weaken it. I call on my colleagues to join me in standing up for vulnerable people and the people who care for them.”

Sen. Michael Hastings: “Illinois is facing a major crisis in providing care to seniors and our most vulnerable. Governor Rauner’s veto weakens the caregiving workforce, when we should be strengthening it. This Governor’s misplaced priorities of providing incentives to corporations, while breaking the backs of middle class Illinois citizens is not what we need. I call on my colleagues to work together and override our Governor’s ill-advised decision.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

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