Do you think Privatization is the Answer?

It’s only September and the 2011 Legislative session doesn’t start for another three months.  But we can expect that public workers may be in the limelight again this year as we hear the early rumblings on how Utah can balance their budget.

Unfortunately, as we hear a lot of noise, the bulk of these savings come at a cost to the public’s service level as well as a cost to the public employee.  Last year, the battle cry was cutting pensions for government employees so we banded together as unions and we were able to lessen the blow.  Although future public employees will carry the bulk of the retirement burden, current employees could expect more attacks to their pensions.

To be attractive to a company, privatization must create a profit which means either the public must pay more, or it must be run with fewer employees or employees being paid less with fewer, if any, benefits.

The growing trend across the country is to cut the budgets on the backs of the employees.  Utah appears to be no exception.  As public employees in Utah we need to get better organized in what we do and begin to come together as one.   As a Union, we need your help by building and joining our public employee’s political action committee.  Through employees coming together and becoming better organized we will stop the attack on our quality of life.

The number of public employees in Utah number about 250,000.  Add another 100,000 teachers to that equation and imagine the impact we could have if we acted together.  PUBLIC EMPLOYMENT IS THE LARGEST INDUSTRY IN UTAH.  So why is it that right now, most politicians don’t worry much about receiving consequences at election time from public employees?  Because we aren’t unified!  Public employees are spread throughout the state and we aren’t organized.   Help UAGE change that!  Email us at uageadmin@uage.net if you would like to help change the current trend to something that will help you and your family survive this economic crisis without having your pay and benefits reduced just because Legislators can.

Blast from the Past

Last Legislative session our representatives went after our retirement.  Led by Senator Daniel Liljenquist (R-Bntfl) the measures resulted in employees working longer for a smaller retirement and placed the burden of any shortfalls on the backs of the employees.  While we, along with many other public employees unions, were able to protect retirement for current employees – both the Senate and the House voted in favor of reducing the retirement for future employees.

Some of our elected officials are up for re-election this year.  Let’s vote for candidates that protect public employees.  We have posted the voting record for SB 63, the retirement act, so you can support those who supported you last legislative session.

Voting “Yea“  – voting to reduce the retirement for future employees.

Senate:
Adams
Hillyard
Madsen
Urquhart
Bramble
Hinkins
Niederhauser
Valentine
Buttars
Jenkins
Okerlund
Van Tassell
Christensen
Knudson
Stevenson, J.
Waddoups
Dayton
Liljenquist
Stowell

House:
Aagard
Fowlke
Hutchings
Powell
Barrus
Frank
Ipson
Ray
Brown
Froerer
Last
Sandstrom
Clark, S.
Garn
Lockhart
Sumsion
Daw
Gibson, F
Mathis
Vickers
Dee
Gibson, K
McIff
Wallis
Dougall
Gowans
Menlove
Webb
Draxler
Grover
Morley
Wilcox
Dunnigan
Harper
Newbold
Wimmer
Edwards
Herrod
Noel
Clark, D.
Ferry
Hughes
Oda
Fisher, Julie
Hunsaker
Painter

Voting “Nay“ – voting to protect public employees retirement

Senate:
Davis
Jones
Morgan
Goodfellow
Mayne
Robles
Greiner
McAdams
Morgan

House:
Anderson
Cosgrove
Johnson
Seegmiller
Beck
Duckworth, S
King
Seelig
Bigelow
Fisher, Janice
Kiser
Watkins
Bird
Greenwood
Litvack
Wheatley
Biskupski
Hansen
Moss
Wiley
Black
Hemingway
Poulson
Chavez-Houck
Hendrickson
Riesen

*If your representative is not listed they did not vote.

Salute to Labor

Jan and MayorSo often, many of Public Employees are the forgotten heroes of government. Unless the employees are in the public view, such as fire or police, they are not recognized for the important function they provide.

Over the last few weeks we have been working our way to the UAGE 1st annual salute to labor. UAGE staff set up at the health department and the county complex. We tried to set up at the County Jail but we were rained out.

It was a great success. We had many people come down to celebrate with us. The Mayor came down to share a few words and a few other elected officials came by to share in the celebration. Most important we had many of the public employees come down and share in their success.

From the community we had support and donations from the following sponsors:

• American Income Life
• AFLAC
• Honest Tea
• Boondocks
• Pie
• Guthries Bicycle
• BEES Baseball
• Mt Olympus Water
• Harmons Brickyard
• Harmons Midvale

We look forward to many more celebrations with you over the coming years.

If you are interested in joining the committee to help set up next year’s Salute to Labor as well as other events like these, please email us at uageadmin@uagecwa.net

Join Uage
When you join UAGE it gives all of us a stronger voice to positively change our wages, hours, and working conditions. Fill out the form below and become a member.
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