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Showing posts from July, 2011

SEBAC Says News Media, Managers Sources Of Inaccurate Information

In a message to all its rank and file members, SEBAC, the coalition of union leaders authorized to dicker with the Malloy administration on contractual matters, reported:

“At the request of State Employees Bargaining Agent Coalition (SEBAC) union leaders, the Malloy Administration has moved to address conflicting information disseminated to some workers who recently received notice of layoff.”Some members, according to the notice, have received inaccurate information spread – not by the Yankee Institute, which SEBAC reported to the attorney general’s office for having compromised it’s e-mail system – but “by news media sources and by some agency managers.” Attorney General George Jepsen a few days ago released a report finding that the SEBAC complaint was without merit.
“The directive was necessary,” SEBAC reported on its propaganda site, “because not only have some state managers disseminated inaccuracies about rescinding layoffs, many in the news media have reported myths and distor…

Yankee Institute vs SEBAC, Final Round

Attorney General George Jepsen having investigated a charge made to his office by SEBAC, a coalition of unions the membership of which soon will be voting either to adopt or reject Plan A 2, that the Yankee Institute had used state the state’s e-mail system to communicate with union workers, the attorney general found that the charges against the institute were false. The comprehensive investigation by two state agencies, the attorney general’s office and the state Auditors of Public Account, Mr. Jepsen wrote in his finding, “did not show that the state e-mail system was improperly accessed or compromised in violation of state laws or policies.”

“As part of our inquiry,” Mr. Jepsen wrote, “we reviewed the e-mails sent to state employees and provided by SEBAC. The first e-mail, containing the subject line 'VOTE No twice on concessions… pass it on' was sent on May 24, 2011 at 8:07 pm from 'Lawrence Jones' to a state employee. The second e-mail, containing the subject lin…

Attorney General Clears Yankee Institute of SEBAC Charges

Attorney General George Jepsen’s statement concerning a complaint filed with his office claiming falsely that the Yankee Institute obtained improper access to the state e-mail system to disseminate false information related to the tentative SEBAC agreement is here printed in full:

STATEMENT BY ATTORNEY GENERAL GEORGE JEPSEN

REGARDING SEBAC COMPLAINT ABOUT E MAILS

By letter dated June 17, 2011, representatives of the State Employees Bargaining Agent Coalition (SEBAC) requested that my office investigate possible violations of state law by the Yankee Institute. The letter alleged that the Yankee Institute obtained improper access to the state e-mail system to disseminate false information related to the tentative SEBAC agreement. We have now, in conjunction with the Auditors of Public Accounts, concluded our inquiry of this matter. We have found no evidence that the state e-mail system was improperly accessed or hacked.

As part of the inquiry, we met twice with representatives of SEBA…

Malloy the Progressive

Commenting on the debt ceiling standoff between national Democrats and Republicans, Governor Malloy in a press release wetted the whistle of fellow Democrats in Connecticut who have for many years been urging governors to slap a significant progressive income tax on rich folk in the southern part of the state, the sort of people who figure in Democratic campaign ads chastising Republicans for being much too friendly with hedge fund managers and yacht owners.

“Last night,” Mr. Malloy wrote, “President Obama laid out a clear choice for the American people. The United States can honor the debts we’ve already incurred while charting a fiscally sustainable path that makes historic cuts in government spending and asks the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to give up some of their tax breaks and special deductions. Or, the United States can simply cut government spending in a way that harms our most vulnerable citizens, damages our economic recovery, and requires no sacrifice fro…

George Soros’ Answer To The Dodd-Frank Financial Regulation Bill

When is a hedge fund not a hedge fund? Answer: When the owner of the fund is George Soros, sugar daddy to various leftist causes. Mr. Soros, according to CNBC’s John Carney, is now out of the hedge fund business -- and out of reach of the tentacles of Dodd-Frank

By closing their funds to outside investors, these managers will be able to escape attempts to regulate them. They won't be classified as hedge funds anymore. Despite their billions of dollars under management, they'll simply be private investors or family funds.

Assistant State Attorney To Argue That Malloy-SEBAC Agreement Violates SEBAC's By-Laws

Even before the votes are cast by state union members on Governor Malloy’s slightly vevised Plan A, Lisa Herskowitz, a senior assistant state's attorney in Manchester, has issued a complait to the state Board of Labor Relations questioning the proposed agreemment, according to a story in the Connecticut Post:

“Herskowitz in her complaint to the labor board alleges SEBAC violated its own bylaws by agreeing to a two-year wage freeze, arguing the coalition's negotiating authority is limited to pensions and health care.

“She further argues SEBAC should not have reopened the existing pension and health-care agreement, which expires in 2017, without allowing union members to first vote to authorize SEBAC to renegotiate the deal. Rank-and-file approval should also have been sought in early July when SEBAC approached Malloy about reopening talks, Herskowitz said.”
The board has agreed to address the matter on August 3.

Three Notes On The Current Crisis

The unilateral changes in by-laws

 It may be noted that what has been done unilaterally by the union leadership may be undone unilaterally by a different leadership.

Despite a desperate attempt by SEBAC negotiators Dan Livingston and Matt O’Connor to pin on such convenient scapegoats as the Yankee Institute  their dramatic failure to sell plan A to union rank and file members, some unions, dissatisfied with SEBAC representation, are now shopping around for other unions with which they might affiliate. In mid-June SEBAC leaders charged the Yankee Institute had improperly used the state’s e-mail system to communicate with union members and referred their dark suspicions to Attorney General George Jepsen, Connecticut’s version, under the state’s previous Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, of poet Francis Thompson’s “The Hound Of Heaven.”

SEBAC leaders, working in tandem with Plan A salesmen in the administration of Governor Dannel Malloy, unilaterally changed union by-laws to reduce to…

Revised SEBAC Malloy Agreement Reinforces Anti-Privatization Measures

The revised agreement between the office of Governor Dannel Malloy and SEBAC, a group of union leaders commissioned by state workers to negotiate contracts with the chief executive, is studded with anti-privatization provisions.

Under a section called “Savings And Transformation,” we are told that the parties to the agreement, the state of Connecticut as represented by the bargaining agents of the governor and the union leaders of SEBAC, a coalition of state unions, “have explored and will continue to explore and, where appropriate, implement strategies to:

“… d. Discourage the use of outside contractors and consultants when internal capacity exists or can reasonably be developed; and

“e. Make best efforts to ensure that vendors and service providers doing business with the state do so at reasonable rates of return and under terms that reflects the shared sacrifice being asked from all sectors of Connecticut society.”Both d and e are anti-privatization clauses, one calling upon Mr. Ma…

How We Got Here And Why We Aren’t Going Anywhere Fast

Governor Malloy’s “shared sacrifice” was never evenly – some might say “fairly” -- distributed. Progressive Democrats, in fact, do not believe in shared sacrifice. Their credo includes, on the tax side, a progressive income tax in which the “rich,” defined as anyone making more than $200,000 per year, pay the lion’s share of governmental “investments.” SEBAC negotiator Dan Livingston is typical of the genus.

In a progressive regime, the majority of people “invest” relatively little in their government and prudently vote for Democrats, who collect little from them in tax payments (AKA “investments”) while showering them with benefits. Whatever name one chooses to put to this lopsided getting and spending process, it is not “shared sacrifice.”

Nationally, the wealthiest 1 percent of the population earns 19 percent of all income and pays 37 percent of the federal income tax, a figure that excludes payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare. The top ten percent pay 68 percent of the t…

SEBAC Negotiators And Malloy Reach Agreement

SEBAC leaders and the administration of Governor Dannel Malloy have, according to a statement released by the governors office, reached an agreement that now will be presented to rank and file union members for ratification.

GOV. MALLOY STATEMENT ON SEBAC ACTION

(HARTFORD, CT) - Governor Malloy released the following statement on SEBAC action:

I am pleased that an agreement has been reached. So that there is no confusion, let’s be clear about what this clarified agreement is. This agreement saves the same amount of money as the last agreement– $1.6 billion over 2 years, $21.5 billion over 20 years – and it contains all of the same cost-saving provisions as the last agreement.

So what’s changed? The health care language has been clarified to make it crystal clear that state employees are not being put into a new healthcare system called ‘SustiNet.’ There is language in the agreement that will allow the state to recoup the money state employees will be getting from a raise that just…

Powell Canes Weicker

Chris Powell, Managing Editor of the Journal Inquirer, takes a stick to former Senator and Governor Lowell Weicker and, as usual, asks all the right questions.
He begins by noting an odd personality tick: Soon after Mr. Weicker launches one of his rhetorical torpedoes, almost always against the Republican Party, the thing boomerangs and blows up his point:

"’That's what leadership is supposed to do,’ Weicker said. ‘It's supposed to make decisions that work, not decisions that are necessarily popular.’ Connecticut's new governor ‘didn't create the mess any more than I created the mess. Both of us have tried to do a job to clean it up.’

“But as is his custom Weicker instantly contradicted himself. Referring to the income tax's huge transfer of wealth from the public to the government, he added: ‘In 20 years all that money and more went down the drain. This state had no hold of its spending whatsoever.’

“Even back then did anyone really think that it would turn o…