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Friday, November 28, 2014

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WGVU profile: Proposal 2


connectmidmichigan.com

Patrick Center
October 29, 2012 | WGVU  While private sector unions like the United Autoworkers or AFL-CIO are regulated under federal law, Proposal 2 would protect Michigan’s public employee’s right to collective bargaining.

“I think it’s really a question of are we in a race to the top economically or a race to the bottom.” Mark Schauer is with Michigan LECET, that’s Michigan Laborers-Employers Cooperation and Education Trust. He says yes to prop 2 because states that have collective bargaining rights do better.

“Those states have better unemployment rates, less poverty, more people covered with health insurance and pensions. And state’s that provide for collective bargaining have median average salaries or income of $8,000 more a year than state’s that have more restrictive collective bargaining law.” Schauer says this is not to say public employees must join unions.

A concern listed at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy’s website is that Prop 2 would give labor unions the ability to repeal many of the reforms that have helped Michigan start to turn the corner after a decade of malaise. Elected representatives would be legislatively powerless to stop them.

While Governor Snyder says he’s not opposed to collective bargaining, in a video he explains the initiative could wipe out a number of different labor laws put in place over the last 50 years.

“If you think about the consequence of wiping out statutes that have been around that long and that many it could be devastating. We’re seeing good economic progress in reinventing Michigan. If this proposal is to pass how much litigation would take place? How much things would come to a standstill and how difficult would it be to move forward.”

Would Proposal two unwind state laws and reforms? Schauer says that’s not true. “Attorney General Bill Schuette claimed that to the Michigan Court of Appeals and to the State Supreme Court. He said that 170 laws would be overturned and that Proposal 2 was overly broad. Those claims were rejected by both courts and by the Supreme Court which is a conservative Supreme Court they rejected that unanimously.”

But there are those who say it’s bad for business. Rick Baker is head of the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce. He says while the state has a very pro-business economy. “From the outside that’s not the perception and I think this just sets us back and drives a nail even harder into that perception.”

Even though Proposition 2 is about state and local employees, Baker says factor it in with the national stigma Michigan is pro-union and it makes it difficult to recruit new businesses.

For Baker, protecting collective bargaining under the state’s constitution is a bad idea? “If they can get this passed they are set. And they can ignore the legislative process and just go directly to the city council and school board tables and have the constitution standing behind them as they negotiate their future.”

For Mark Schauer, Michigan’s constitution should be amended to include collective bargaining right. “We have
seen basic rights that are under the jurisdiction of the state
legislature to be systematically chipped away. That’s the crux of the problem.”

684,000 residents signed the petition to place Proposition 2 on the ballot. The final vote comes November 6th.


More WGVU News
Yesterday
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Downtown Grand Rapids 'census' planned
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Dozens arrested for drugs, firearms in Detroit operation
Detroit, MI  November 27, 2014  |  AP  Law enforcement officials in Detroit say they have arrested dozens of people and seized illegal weapons and drugs in a coordinated enforcement effort.   
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Wednesday
Several hundred attend Grand Rapids Ferguson rally
  November 26, 2014  |  WGVU  Residents, students and community organizations came together in cities and campuses across West Michigan after this week’s grand jury decision in Ferguson.    
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Jury deciding case of tutor who had sex with boy
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Kalamazoo cop car damaged during Ferguson protest
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Motown float making debut in Detroit parade
Detroit, MI  November 26, 2014  |  WGVU  The event known as "America's Thanksgiving Parade" is honoring what once was called the "Sound of Young America."    

Tuesday
Grand Rapids holds Ferguson solidarity event
  November 25, 2014  |  WGVU  Grand Rapids joins other Michigan cities gathering tonight following Monday’s decision in Ferguson.    
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'ReThink' promotes region to former residents
  November 25, 2014  |  WGVU  A Thanksgiving Eve event hopes to attract former Michigan talent back to the area.    
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WGVU-HD airing FRONTLINE "Ebola Outbreak"
  November 25, 2014  |  WGVU  Tuesday, November 25th @ 10:00 PM on WGVU-HD, FRONTLINE takes you to the villages outside Sierra Leone, Africa. Producer and reporter Wael Dabbous introduces you to patients infected with the deadly virus and the health care workers treating and tracking Ebola.    
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Michigan Supreme Court taking part in adoption day
LANSING, Mich.   November 25, 2014  |  AP  A Michigan Supreme Court justice joins other judges in approving adoptions as part the state's 12th annual adoption day.   
Michigan commission urges gay rights protections
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Michigan delays implementing health care program
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Detroit vigil takes place after Ferguson decision
DETROIT  November 25, 2014  |  AP  A peaceful vigil took place in downtown Detroit after a grand jury's decision not to indict a white police officer who killed a black 18-year-old in Ferguson, Missouri.   
State police boost patrols around Thanksgiving
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Michigan woman gets probation for animal cruelty
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Monday
High winds, snow forecast in parts of Michigan
Grand Rapids MI  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  Forecasters say a cold front moving through the Great Lakes region will bring high winds and lower temperatures to Michigan.    
Homeless camp faces eviction in Ann Arbor
Ann Arbor MI  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  People living in an Ann Arbor homeless camp are bracing for eviction from the privately owned woods where they've established their tent community.    
Rhodes scholars include Michigan man
Holland MI  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  A University of Michigan student from western Michigan has been named a Rhodes scholar.    
AAA Michigan: Gas prices fall 13 cents in week
Dearborn, MI  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  AAA Michigan says gasoline prices have dropped about 13 cents a gallon in the last week.    
Authorities: Man, 22, fatally stabs woman, 57
Antwerp Township, MI  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  Authorities say a 22-year-old man fatally stabbed a 57-year-old woman at a home in southwestern Michigan following a dispute.    
Fire put out at Grand Rapids trucking business
Grand Rapids MI  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  Authorities say a suspected natural gas explosion may have started a fire at a trucking business in Grand Rapids.    
Conversations can 'move the needle' of inequity
  November 24, 2014  |  WGVU  A recent event addressing racial inequity in Grand Rapids underscores the importance of having those conversations.    
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Michigan-Ohio rivalry... over insurance sign-ups?
ANN ARBOR, Mich.  November 24, 2014  |  AP  In a nod to their states' historic football rivalry, Michigan and Ohio health advocates have launched a competition to see which state can reach the most uninsured residents about health coverage.   
Murder charge for man, 22, in stabbing of aunt, 57
ANTWERP TOWNSHIP, Mich.  November 24, 2014  |  AP  Authorities say a 22-year-old man fatally stabbed his 57-year-old aunt at their home in southwestern Michigan following a dispute.   
Kalamazoo County re-count to begin Dec. 8
  November 24, 2014  |  MPRN  Candidates and campaigns that are unhappy with the results of the November elections have until Wednesday afternoon to ask for recounts.    
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