Monday, March 14, 2011

Contact Your Legislator NOW!!

Last Thursday, the House prepared for final passage a bill that would freeze teachers' salaries and benefit levels during contract negotiations.

The measure,
HB 4152, is one of an array of bills currently chugging through the GOP-controlled legislature that would eliminate options that labor brings to local bargaining tables. From the viewpoint of labor, the bills would interfere with the local collective bargaining process.
HB 4152 is sponsored by Rep. Marty KNOLLENBERG (R-Troy) (See "Teacher Negotiation Wage Freeze Bill Reported," 3/2/11).

As previously reported in MIRS, it's believed
HB 4152 could have legs in the Senate. It was one of the measures that came from the task force Senate Education Committee Chair Phil PAVLOV (R-St. Clair) headed last year.

Former House Education Chair Tim MELTON (D-Auburn Hills) today offered three amendments to
HB 4152. They were all defeated quickly by quick gavel.

They were:

- To tie bar the bill to
HB 4373, which would cap superintendent salaries;

- Taking language out of the bill that would prohibit retroactivity; and

- Changing language in the bill that makes employees pay for health care increases that might occur during negotiations.

When the bill was before the House Education Committee it was changed to allow healthcare coverage for additional dependents during negotiations.

Melton didn't speak on his amendments. He told reporters that he had discussed them with House Speaker Jase BOLGER (R-Marshall) and decided nothing would be gained by making a floor statement.

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