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AFT-NH Red Issue Action Alert Retirement

AFT-NH
Red Issue Action Alert
Retirement
June 13, 2011

Office of the Governor
Phone: 603-271-2121
Hours: 8:30am-5:00pm
Messages can be left after hours

CALL GOVERNOR LYNCH – VETO Senate Bill 3! It has been confirmed that Governor Lynch has received SB3. He will have until this Wednesday June 15, 2011 at 5pm to sign the bill into law, allow it to become law without his signature, or veto it. This legislation continues the coordinated attack on the middle class being waged by Republican legislators, and must be killed. Call Governor Lynch immediately and tell him to veto SB3 because:

1. It is bad public policy to support a bill that will not pass constitutional muster. Senate Bill three is unconstitutional based on the findings of previous NH court cases. These cases include: Jeannont v. NH Personnel Commission, the State Employees’ Association (et. al) vs. Belknap County.

2. SB3 breaks the promise that was made to you when you became a permanent employee. When you took the job, there were contractual provisions attached to your employment with regards to your pension. Changing your contract now could be considered by the court to be a retrospective law. We believe it will violate the contract clause stated in the NH and US Constitution. This opinion is also shared by the assistant attorney general in testimony provided before the governor’s commission.

3. SB3 cuts member benefits through a public employee income tax to pay for a longstanding employer debt that was known and went unpaid for many years.

4. This bill has nothing to do with the sustainability of the retirement system or addressing the system’s long-term shortfall caused by failure to fully fund the system in the past. Those changes have been made by previous legislatures and are now working.

We only have until 5pm on Wednesday, so please CALL THE GOVERNOR TODAY (603-271-2121)– VETO SB3!

In Solidarity,
Laura Hainey
AFT-NH President

AFT-NH
553 Route 3A
Ruggles IV
Bow NH 03304
lhainey@aft-nh.org

Exeter News Service: WHEN IS THE LEGISLATURE GOING TO START TO KEEP ITS PROMISES TO THE VOTERS??

If you are not reading Lee Quants Blog already, here is a good ont to start with.

Exeter News Service: WHEN IS THE LEGISLATURE GOING TO START TO KEEP ITS PROMISES TO THE VOTERS??: “WHEN IS THE LEGISLATURE GOING TO START TO KEEP ITS PROMISES TO THE VOTERS??”

I have talked to a number of state reps already about the promises that were made to them aboutif they would change their votes or take a walk when the vote came up. Money for their campaigns, better districts in the upcoming redistricting plan and putting them back on committees they were removed from for previously voting their conscience or better committee assignments. They tell me all they have to do is one of the above so the vote outcome will change to the Speakers position on the bill known as Right to Work. Its not working because these people believe they need to represent their constituents, all their constituents. Some outside the statehouse have questioned the legality of such offers when they hear such offers have been made.

Do any of these promises fall into the below statue for violations? Our attorney seems to think so.

Maine AFL CIO Maine AFL-CIO Home

This is a message from Maine looking for help on the action against LD1257. If you live in Maine take the time to fill out this letter to your reps.

Maine AFL CIO Maine AFL-CIO Home: “Take Action to Stop LD 1257!
Seems like the Legislature is set on meddling with collectively bargaining rights this session — from the so-called ‘right to work’ bills, to repealing Decoster workers’ right to form a union, to this… LD 1257. LD 1257 would make it illegal for the state to establish a Project Labor Agreement on public works projects.

Project Labor Agreement (PLA) is a project-wide, pre-hire collective bargaining agreement that applies to a single construction project and establishes ground rules that cover all contractors and all construction workers on the project. They make for efficient, well-run, high-road projects. PLAs have been used for years in the public and private sectors, and are used by some of the most successful Fortune 100 and 500 companies, like Toyota.

Of course, the Legislature shouldn’t be taking the option to negotiate these agreements off the table. What’s even worse is that bans on project labor agreements are in conflict with the National Labor Relations Act, the preeminent law governing labor in the US. In Ohio, a similar ban was struck down as being unconstitutional.

Take action to let your State Representative and Senator know where you stand.”

LTE: House needs a new speaker

A great letter from Debra Pouliot who is calling for Speaker O’Brien’s resignation.

House needs a new speaker | Concord Monitor: “Having never been a unionized or state employee, I hold no strong opinion on the right-to-work legislation. My issue is not the vote concerning right-to-work but O’Brien’s ongoing manipulation of the lawmakers, playing with the date for the right-to-work vote, and his heavy-handed power over the House. These members took an oath to serve the public and their constituents, not O’Brien. If he pulls this prank off, he’ll likely do it again as he seeks total control of the House and Republican Party. In my book, this makes him potentially dangerous.


Before he can do more damage to the House and to the members of his own party, I feel he should resign. As a state representative, he works for me. Since we have at-will employment in this state, I would recommend his termination as speaker. Call it the random whim of a lifelong resident who has had enough.”

Northern Pass project spurs lobbying effort | New Hampshire NEWS06

More news on the Northern Pass…..

Northern Pass project spurs lobbying effort | New Hampshire NEWS06: “Earlier this month, ahead of the state Senate’s vote to further study an eminent domain bill that could have derailed the Northern Pass project, Sen. Jeanie Forrester, R-Meredith, lamented that her constituents believed that Public Service of New Hampshire was more powerful than the Senate.

That’s debatable, but a review of lobbying records and other documents indicates that the utility company and its partners in the proposed $1.2 billion transmission line have devoted considerable resources to promote the project, both at the State House and beyond.”

Simply ignoring constituent’s request – Cabinet.com

This is a great letter from a Bedford Resident.  I will say I have personally contracted Sen White, and after multiple phone messages and personal emails, he did respond to me in the same manor.  Friendly stating he was in favor of the bill and would be voting for it.  Why do we continue to elect people who continue to ignore constituents.  They are our elected representatives in Concord and they should be speaking for us.

Simply ignoring constituent’s request – Cabinet.com: “I respectfully e-mailed Senator White asking him not to support HB 474. His initial response politely said he intended to vote in favor of an override of Governor Lynch’s veto. He gave no reason why he would vote in this manner. With respect, I responded asking him to detail why he would vote against the wishes of a constituent. I also added, not to do so, lead me to believe he was not in favor of the working people of New Hampshire – only the Republican party.
Senator White responded using my familiar name, telling me he replied to me many times on this issue (my response was my second e-mail to him!) and this would be his last time as he no longer appreciated hearing from me since it was obviously “My way or the highway. So I’m picking the highway after this final response.””

Unions face uphill battle | FLORIDA TODAY | floridatoday.com

Just interesting news on Labor out of Florida.

Unions face uphill battle | FLORIDA TODAY | floridatoday.com: “Labor unions, already in decline ¤statewide and on the Space ¤Coast, expect to lose even more ¤members in Brevard County ¤this summer as NASA sheds contract workers at Kennedy Space Center in the wake of the shuttle program’s conclusion.

Since 2007, nearly 1,000 union members — a quarter of the union work force — have lost their jobs at KSC, where about a third of the workers belong to one of eight unions. And several hundred union members likely will be among about 2,000 workers to be laid off July 22, after the last shuttle flight.”

NH House, Senate negotiating teacher tenure – Boston.com

A quick message on Education Reform in NH…..
NH House, Senate negotiating teacher tenure – Boston.com: “Under the latest version of the bill, if a teacher is denied contract renewal by a local school board, he or she could still appeal to the state board of education. Layoffs also would not be based solely on seniority if a district reduces its workforce.

Supporters argue the bill gives schools more time to decide which teachers are doing the best job. Opponents say administrators can do that now if they evaluate new teachers regularly. They also oppose a provision that eliminates the teachers’ ability to seek arbitration if it was part of a collective bargaining agreement.”

AFT-NH CALL TO ACTION ON JUNE 22ND

AFT-NH
CALL TO ACTION ON JUNE 22ND
TIME TO STAND UP AND TAKE ACTION!
Our AFL-CIO union brothers and sisters have been holding down the fort at the State House. Now that most of our schools will be out by June 22nd, we call upon all AFT-NH members to be at the state house on June 22nd at 8 am.
Your commitment, energy and enthusiasm to protect worker’s rights must be seen by these legislators and you can let Speaker O’Brien know that his tricks won’t work.
The first 200 members to arrive will receive an AFT T-shirt show you can wear your Union solidarity proudly and stand up against these attacks.
Why be at the State House!
After three weeks, Speaker O’Brien still refuses to call the vote on HB 474 the so called right to work—for less bill. Last Wednesday, two supportive legislators asked that the speaker call for the vote. Each time he called them out of order. What is he waiting for –more time for him to twist arms and bully legislators to vote his way.
Remember, they are trying to slowly erode your union rights, your voice in the workplace and they are just getting warmed up for the all out attack. We cannot let this happen. PLEASE be at the state house on June 22nd at 8am.
We are also still asking members to call the speaker at 271-3661. Tell him to call for the vote on HB 474, put it in the calendar and give 48 hours notice and take the vote on June 22nd.  Tell him to stop playing political games.
Another action you can take is to go to http://act.ly/3s9
Please continue to spread the word about this attack on the middle class talk to your family, friends and neighbors and ask them to take action with you.
Stay connected by signing up for “AFT-NH Get Active by going to www.aft-nh.org. Visit us on FACEBOOK and follow me on twitter at 8027aftnh.
In Solidarity,
Laura Hainey
AFT-NH President
I WILL SEE YOU AT THE STATE HOUSE ON JUNE 22nd!
You have to see what is happening in Concord to believe it!
AFT-NH
553 Route 3A
Ruggles IV
Bow  NH  03304

300 public workers retire ahead of pension changes | New Hampshire NEWS06

With the changes being brought on by the State Legislature, municipal workers are running for the door by the hundreds. This is just one more article showing how people do not want you to mess with their retirement so before they can change it, they are leaving.

300 public workers retire ahead of pension changes | New Hampshire NEWS06: “CONCORD — Three hundred public employees — police officers, firefighters and state and municipal workers — retired as of June 1 amid debate over their pension costs and benefits.

And more than 800 others have filed paperwork to retire in July, although many of those could change their minds now that the Legislature has finalized changes to the New Hampshire Retirement System.

The changes are meant to slow the increase in retirement costs that taxpayers have to fund in local budgets.

But they could also trigger additional costs to local communities if more workers choose to retire early. That’s because the costs of termination payouts — accrued vacation and sick time — are borne by the local municipalities.

Last week, the House and the Senate passed a compromise package hammered out in conference committee that would increase how much workers would pay into the retirement system starting July 1 and how benefits would be calculated in the future. The agreement would have the greatest impact on workers with fewer than 10 years in the system, changing how their benefits are calculated.”

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