A Need for Public Sector Collective Bargaining Reform

This isn’t one of those click-bate type posts. Public sector collective what? When most people read the headline above they move on — too dry — no sexy content or action. Would the photo of former Governor Terminator help draw attention? Maybe, but I doubt it. That’s too bad because readers are missing out on plenty of conflict, plenty of drama. It involves taxpayers and taxeaters, and as we all know, the taxeaters are winning.

Although these two articles are California-focused, make no mistake — you probably live in a state with the same problems. I know I do — Illinois takes second place to no one when it comes to greedy public sector unions and a public that is mostly uninformed about just how bad things really are.

It’s called the information war. And while I don’t expect more Americans to read long articles like these two, I do expect conservatives of all stripes to help get the word out about this kind of legalized theft. For the most part, conservatives are still failing in that task.

A Need for Public Sector Collective Bargaining Reform
By David Kersten

California business leaders are unanimous in their desire for the California Legislature to proactively improve the state’s business climate, as opposed to only enacting policies that will further hinder economic growth.

But it is far less understood how to actually get to a place where the Legislature both acknowledges that there are major issues with the state’s business climate and works with business leaders to advance solutions.

I have thought long and hard about this issue and believe that public sector collective bargaining reform should be among the top priorities, if not the top priority for the business community to improve the state’s business climate.

The short answer about why reform is needed is that the state’s current system of collective bargaining locks in high-cost government and prevents meaningful government reforms that will both increase efficiencies and make the state more hospitable to business.

Read more: Union Watch

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Average Costa Mesa Firefighter Makes Nearly $250,000 Per Year. Why? Pensions.
By Ed Ring

Does that fact have your attention? Because media consultants insist we preface anything of substance with a hook like this. It even has the virtue of being true! And now, for those with the stomach for it, let’s descend into the weeds.

According to payroll and benefit data reported by the City of Costa Mesa to the California State Controller, during 2015 the average full-time firefighter made $240,886. During the same period, the average full-time police officer in Costa Mesa made $201,330. In both cases, that includes the cost, on average, for their regular pay, overtime, “other pay,” the city’s payment to CalPERS for the city’s share, the city’s payment to CalPERS of a portion of the employee’s share, and the city’s payments for the employee’s health and dental insurance benefits.

And if you think that’s a lot, just wait. Because the payments CalPERS is demanding from Costa Mesa – and presumably every other agency that participates in their pension system – are about to go way up.

Read more: Union Watch

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