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*** UPDATED x1 *** Rauner’s “fair share” executive order struck down by St. Clair County judge

Tuesday, Jan 2, 2018

* BND

A St. Clair County circuit judge’s ruling in a lawsuit could determine the financial health of Democratic-leaning labor unions that represent government workers.

Judge Chris Kolker issued the ruling Wednesday, vacating Gov. Bruce Rauner’s executive order to halt collection of union fees for nonunion members who work in state jobs but benefit from collective bargaining.

Kolker found that Rauner’s executive order violated state law, collective bargaining agreements and the Illinois Constitution. Kolker ruled that the governor was trying “to rewrite 26 collective bargaining agreements. This is expressly prohibited by state law.” […]

But the whole thing may be moot, pending a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in another case.

That second case involves Mark Janus, a state employee who says Illinois law violates his free speech rights by requiring him to pay fees subsidizing a union he doesn’t support, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. About half the states have similar laws covering so-called “fair share” fees that cover bargaining costs for nonmembers. […]

Patty Schuh, a Rauner spokeswoman, said the governor had issued the executive order in the St. Clair County case “to protect the First Amendment rights of government workers and initiated what became the Janus vs. AFSCME case. The Supreme Court has agreed to hear the Janus case because of the First Amendment rights at stake. We look forward to the Supreme Court’s decision.”

Schuh added, “The governor supports the freedom for all government workers to choose what political speech to support and whether or not to take money out of their paychecks to pay dues to a union.”

The ruling is here.

*** UPDATE *** AFSCME…

Public service workers know that Bruce Rauner is fiercely hostile to working people, wants to take away their freedom to join together in strong unions, and is determined to drive down their wages. That was the motivation for his illegal executive order and for the suit he initiated that’s now before the US Supreme Court.

Members of AFSCME and all public service unions are organizing to make sure their co-workers and their communities understand Rauner’s scheme to rig the system, silence working people and take more power and control for himself.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

44 Comments
  1. - Lt Guv - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 9:15 am:

    Thank you Chris.


  2. - Osborne Smith III - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 9:24 am:

    One more year of Bruce. We can do this.


  3. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 9:24 am:

    As 2018 begins, and the 2018 campaign season really begins, Rauner had four things he felt would be different in a second term, if Rauner wins;

    Janus, RTW zones, and destroying AF-Scammy.

    Rauner told this to the Chicago Tribune.

    Not better Higher Ed, not better infrastructure, not even lower taxes or better government… the goal(s) of a Rauner second term all revolve around hurting Labor, or hurting anyone else that might help others choose to hurt Labor, like social services.

    What an absolute waste of a gubernatorial term this Rauner first term was. A second term is geared toward hurting people, purposely, with no real vision for Illinois in the end.

    Don’t take my word for it. Rauner told us, so listen.


  4. - Raccoon Mario - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 9:38 am:

    I don’t agree with my taxes funding wars I don’t support, so I should get to opt out of paying taxes.


  5. - Domas - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 9:41 am:

    OW, what’s the fourth?


  6. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 9:45 am:

    Hurting as many non-Labor people, like social services, to force a choice to hurt Labor and not “them”, like social services.

    The three… Janus, RTW Zones, AF-Scammy… and the fourth, hurting others to keep hurting Labor… that’s the blueprint and vision Rauner sees for a second term… as warped as that is.


  7. - Generic Drone - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:05 am:

    Just a temperary setback for Rauner who is determined to destroy labor.


  8. - Generic Drone - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:07 am:

    Reminds me of Star Trek. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. However, in Rauners view, the needs of the few outweigh the needs of the many.


  9. - A Jack - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:10 am:

    Governor,
    Please determine the amount of my taxes you wasted on frivolous lawsuits and send me a check for that amount.


  10. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:11 am:

    How many “working people” tropes can AFSCME squeeze in before their inevitable post-Janus merger with SEIU?


  11. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:16 am:

    “What an absolute waste of a gubernatorial term this Rauner first term was. A second term is geared toward hurting people, purposely, with no real vision for Illinois in the end.”

    Perfectly said.

    I saw California Gov. Jerry Brown on “60 Minutes.” What a difference a governor makes. Brown cut spending, raised taxes and has a strong economy and budget surplus. None of this red state anti-union stuff. Now recreational marijuana is being sold in Cali, which will help even more.

    Minnesota, Colorado, Massachusetts and California are following different paths to prosperity, and none of them have plutocratic union-busting or the wealthiest Americans like Rauner and his funders trying to extort people by telling them jobs won’t come unless labor rights are reduced.


  12. - Ste_with_a_ven - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 10:58 am:

    “None of this red state anti-union stuff.”
    You may want to check that. He is not exactly loved by unions.


  13. - California Guy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:00 am:

    @ Grandson of Man

    Hard to compare California to Illinois and say that the prescription for success in California can be replicated in Illinois. Californians are willing to pay relatively high taxes as a cost to access perfect weather, proximity to diverse geography, recreation, etc. Illinois is in a very different place. There’s actually talk in the California Senate now about LOWERING the income tax rate to maintain a stable tech industry here.

    Brown is more of a Clinton-type centrist. He vetoes practically any spending increase and blocks the legislature from expanding social programs because he knows that California has an extremely high reliance on high income earners paying income tax. If the economy sinks, the State gets hit really hard. Aside from Rauner’s attacks on unions, Brown’s policies really aren’t all that different.


  14. - Steve Polite - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:03 am:

    What if I don’t agree with the political actions and lobbying of my utility companies? Does that violate my free speech rights? Shouldn’t I be able to opt out of paying for their services also?


  15. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:07 am:

    ===He is not exactly loved by unions.===

    Rauner’s anti-labor thoughts make others on a spectrum seem palatable.

    (Tips cap to - GoM -)


  16. - AC - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:13 am:

    ==You may want to check that. He is not exactly loved by unions.==

    Unions are indeed angry with Brown over pension reform, but that’s a long way from the types of policies Rauner has advocated for unions. Unions in Illinois were unhappy with Democrats over pension reform, but they learned there are far worse things than disagreement over a single issue.


  17. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:29 am:

    ==I saw California Gov. Jerry Brown on “60 Minutes.” What a difference a governor makes. Brown cut spending, raised taxes and has a strong economy and budget surplus.==

    Don’t forget his recent actions on pension reform.


  18. - California Guy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:33 am:

    In terms of policy, Brown and Rauner aren’t all that different. Rauner is definately “anti-union” relative to Brown, but both have pushed similar agendas on tax, labor, and pension reform.

    California is hard to compare to Illinois and what works for California might not work for Illinois. Californians are willing to stomach higher taxes to receive the benefits of perfect weather, a good university system, diverse geography, etc, but there’s also a lot of pragmatic work being done here (mainly by Brown) that wouldn’t even be considered in hyper-partisan Illinois. For example, the progressiveness of the income tax here has led to a high reliance on high income earners - many of which draw income from market returns. Brown has advocated for less of a reliance on that because it’s made the State budget unstable. Recessions happen and California is uniquely exposed. Brown has also championed a middle-ground position on pension reform that would be view as “nuclear” in Illinois.

    Very different attitude than the “if you’re not with us, you’re against us” attitude that is Illinois politics.


  19. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:34 am:

    None of those states unions are as powerful as Illinois labor unions. What are the unions in Illinois unhappy with budget busting democrats about?

    Nothing they object to passes the General Assembly


  20. - Whatever - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:44 am:

    ==Rauner’s anti-labor thoughts make others on a spectrum seem palatable.==

    Absolutely. They’ve made a lot of people (including George Will) believe that Madigan has always been the unions’ best friend.


  21. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 12:29 pm:

    Madigan is the union’s best friend refusing to fix the pensions he admits are unsustainable by calling Senator Cullerton’s pension bill or fix anything that will promote growth in the private sector to pay for all the largesse he has promised his supporters


  22. - Crispycritter - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 12:37 pm:

    Don’t want to pay union dues, don’t take a union job. Same analogy to don’t like flying, don’t become a pilot if you don’t want to be required to fly.


  23. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 12:47 pm:

    Waiting for ck. to say this was a victory.


  24. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:12 pm:

    ==Don’t want to pay union dues, don’t take a union job.==

    Unless the union pays the employee, it is not a union job. That’s why AFSCME workers for the state are typically referred to as state employees, not union employees. Because, you know, taxes.

    Does the union vet the job candidates’s qualifications during the application process? Does the union certify the employee’s credentials to perform the job? Does the union provide continuing education for that employee to grow on the job? For most public service unions, the answer is no to all 3.

    Union membership is not a pre-requisite to perform a job. As long as a person is qualified, folks don’t care if they join the union or not.


  25. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:12 pm:

    === Aside from Rauner’s attacks on unions, Brown’s policies really aren’t all that different. ===

    LOLOL

    You already need a vacation.


  26. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:18 pm:

    ==Nothing they object to passes the General Assembly ==

    Lol. Tier II. Employees still owed back wages. Insufficient appropriations for Group Insurance.


  27. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:20 pm:

    City Zen:

    Don’t take a union covered job. That is the more appropriate description.

    While the Courts may disagree I still say that nobody is forced to join a union. You know up front if union membership is required. If you don’t like unions then don’t take that job.


  28. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:21 pm:

    ==refusing to fix the pensions==

    Tier II. Now Tier III. You’re problem is that you don’t like it they can’t do anything about Tier I.


  29. - Crispycritter - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:23 pm:

    City Zen, you totally miss the point, your logic makes no logical sense.


  30. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:33 pm:

    Demoralized: So if I have all the qualifications to perform a state job but don’t want to join the administrative layer between me and the job, I can’t take the state job? If I have a PhD in Mathematics, am certified to teach, and wish to teach math in Englewood at a fraction of what I could earn in the private sector, yet don’t want to join CTU, I can’t teach?

    Why would citizens care if qualified and willing people are union members or not if it has no bearing on performing the actual job?


  31. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:38 pm:

    Nobody said you can’t take the job, City Zen. Jobs have all kinds of requirements. Union membership is a requirement for most state jobs. If union membership so offends someone then they don’t have to take the job.

    Again, while the courts might disagree I don’t see how someone’s 1st Amendment rights are being violated when they aren’t being forced to do anything.


  32. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:39 pm:

    - City Zen -

    Collective bargaining is designed to get the best deal for a workforce. That’s what it’s designed to do, when management agrees and terms are then put to paper.

    Your “concern” for that teacher, if it’s you or not, seems to waver between unions themselves are bad, and they stifle jobs.

    Are you saying the teacher shortage in CPS is due to CTU?


  33. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 1:53 pm:

    When the Governor issued his Executive Order more people went from Fair Share to full union members. Even if Janus is successful I’m not sure he’s going to get the result in the state workforce that he thinks he’s going to get. It will be interesting if any significant amount of people leave the union. I’m betting they won’t.


  34. - California Guy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:07 pm:

    @ Rich Miller

    “LOLOL

    You already need a vacation.”

    Happy to hear how you think reforming pensions, flattening the State tax code, resisting single-payer health care, expanding the use of toll roads, opposing large minimum wage increases, and criminal justice reform are significantly different between Rauner and Brown. Both share those positions - it sounds like you are unaware of Brown’s legislative history here in California.

    Even on minimum wage, Brown signed the minimum wage bill under veto override threat to avoid having the unions take it to public referendum. He signed it while literally saying: “Economically, the minimum wage may not make sense.”


  35. - RNUG - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:10 pm:

    Technically, union membership is NOT required for any State job.

    If you take a job covered by a union contract, you don’t have to become a union member. But you DO have to pay the “fair share” fee.

    As far as I am concerned, this case is not about 1st Amendment rights per se. The actual lobbying that Janus is objecting to is done by the PAC, not the union. In theory, no “fair share” fees are used for lobbying. The only legal question I see is if there is enough separation (Chinese Wall) between the PAC activities and the union activities.

    Be interesting to see how strictly SCOTUS defines / rules on this case.


  36. - Hottot - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:12 pm:

    ===Madigan is the union’s best friend refusing to fix the pensions he admits are unsustainable by calling Senator Cullerton’s pension bill or fix anything that will promote growth in the private sector to pay for all the largesse he has promised his supporters===

    Lucky Pierre, you’re forgetting the Tier 2 pension benefit that greatly reduces the pension benefit, and requires employees to work longer. You’re also forgetting SB 1 that slashed pension benefits for current employees and retirees. Madigan wanted that bill passed, then the SCOIL threw it out unanimously.


  37. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:20 pm:

    Jerry Brown solves problems. He doesn’t just talk about it.


  38. - Morty - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:21 pm:

    Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 11:34 am:

    None of those states unions are as powerful as Illinois labor unions. What are the unions in Illinois unhappy with budget busting democrats about?

    Nothing they object to passes the General Assembly

    You must have missed the creation of Tier II and the 2014 attempt at pension reform that passed both chambers and was signed by Governor Quinn.

    You might have placed it in your Memory Hole but the rest of us haven‘t


  39. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:41 pm:

    OW - There’s a teacher shortage at CPS? Is this outside the typical SpEd and STEM “shortages” many districts deal with? According to NCES, Illinois still boasts a lower student/teacher ratio than they did 10 years ago. Please cite your sources.


  40. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 3:48 pm:

    - City Zen -

    http://bit.ly/2lJ93WV


  41. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 4:27 pm:

    ==The only legal question I see is if there is enough separation (Chinese Wall) between the PAC activities and the union activities.==

    Agreed. It’s sometimes difficult to discern what union activities are not political. When AFSCME contributes $12,000 of dues money to Citizens Action and reports it not as political activities but as a grant, as they did in 2016, then Citizens Action offers nothing but political opinions on Twitter, how is that not political speech?

    OW - Thanks.


  42. - Skeptic - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 8:09 pm:

    $12,000 of dues money or fair share money? If it’s the former then it’s a non-issue. If it’s the latter you need to back up your claim.


  43. - City Zen - Tuesday, Jan 2, 18 @ 8:46 pm:

    Skeptic - A union’s LM-2 report isn’t a cash-flow statement. All I can tell you is what the report says. There are separate categories for expenses. The payment to Citizens Action is under “contributions, gifts, and grants”, not “political activities and lobbying”. Under “contributions, gifts, and grants” on that same report are $5,000 payments to both Sargent Shriver Center on Poverty Law and Faith Coalition for the Common Good.

    So the question is where does the money come from for Shriver and Faith, because it comes from the same “pot” as Citizens Action. If it’s from dues, AFSCME will need to back up their claim…to the Supreme Court.


  44. - Rabid - Wednesday, Jan 3, 18 @ 5:20 am:

    Anyone who hates their coworkers for certifying a union, needs to get along or get along


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