Governor Carcieri: “There will be no resumption of negotiations with Council 94”

The Governor’s office released this statement about an hour ago.

“There will be no resumption of negotiations with Council 94,” said Governor Carcieri. “My administration spent six months and hundreds of hours negotiating the terms of this agreement with representatives of Council 94. Those representatives agreed to the terms that were finally negotiated. There were numerous concessions from the state, including not going forward with the layoff of hundreds of employees and guaranteed wage increases of 8.5% over the four year contract.”
“The results of this vote can lead me to only one or two conclusions. Either the representatives of Council 94 who were part of this agreement have not been negotiating in good faith, or that there is an internal power struggle between the union heads within Council 94 that undercut the vote. In either case, there is no basis for further discussions. Two-thirds of the other state employee unions have ratified the agreement, including the United Nurses and Allied Professionals Local 5019, which voted to ratify the agreement last night. They do appreciate the severe financial pressure the state faces, and have chosen to be a part of the solution.”
“The state’s financial status is not improving. In fact, there are signs that the national economic slow down, with high energy prices, may prolong the weak economy in Rhode Island. As Governor, I am obligated by law to balance our state’s budget and will do so.”
“I am carefully reviewing our options with my legal and administrative staff. I intend to announce a course of action next week that will be in the best interest of our state and all its citizens.”

ADDENDUM
Today’s Providence Journal has more details, including how many other public employee unions have and have not signed on to this contract.

Council 94 rejected the same deal that went to 13 smaller unions that make up the other two-thirds of the state’s work force. At least seven of the independent unions have voted to accept the four-year contract, while three have voted it down. The rest will vote in the coming days.

One puzzling item (not referenced in the article) is the assertion yesterday by Council 94 leadership that no negotiations took place between the state and the union prior to their bringing this contract to their members. If that’s the case, what exactly took place in the thirty meetings between Council 94 leadership and the administration?

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Bill Tetrault
Bill Tetrault
13 years ago

Sorry sweety,
I have it straight from the union leadership that a phone call with Governor Cave-In has resolved the whole thing. He has agreed to re-balance the health care cuts to make them more fair and re-submit the package to a new vote which will take place on Thursday. Sorry baby, no PATCO moment for Governor Wimp Bag

Frye
Frye
13 years ago

That’s strange because I’ve just got off the phone with someone on the inside of the administration and they told me that by the end of next week they were planning on popping a 1,000 Council 94 members just to drive home the point to the other unions that they aren’t screwing around anymore.

JT
JT
13 years ago

“Sweety” “baby” ???
How very sexist – but what would you expect from union thugs?

Bill Tetrault
Bill Tetrault
13 years ago

Honey Cakes,
Don’t get your panties in a bunch. I am telling you – this whole thing has been worked out. I was in the room when the call was placed to Grampa Don! Sweety, this really is men stuff, why don’t you run along and bake something – ok?

The Chorus
The Chorus
13 years ago

BT – The way you think, I assume you were cleaning the windows down at the union hall.

Andrew
Editor
13 years ago

Watch out Bill, intentionally spreading false information will get you banned.

Bill Tetrault
Bill Tetrault
13 years ago

Wooo watch out the free speech police might ban you…. whooooo I am so scared.
Give me a break, you guys are beyond clueless. Oh, and Mr. Chorus, just hit the post button once. What? On your way to a mensa meeting?

THE Chorus
THE Chorus
13 years ago

BT – HA! It’s THE Chorus, not Mr. Chorus. You’re so dense the reference goes right over your head. Hope all of your documents are in order, I hear the state and ICE are keeping a close eye on janitors these days.

Bill Tetrault
Bill Tetrault
13 years ago

What ever dude. How’s that blogging working out for you in Mom’s basement?

THE Chorus
THE Chorus
13 years ago

BT
It’s going fine, but I could really use your help cleaning up my Starbucks cups.
Bro, give it up, you don’t have my wit or intelligence (which is why I can work in the private sector and not have to rely on a union protecting my job).
Now do everyone a favor and finish washing those windows.

Will
Will
13 years ago

There’s nothing left to negotiate, unless they are willing to give the exact same dollar amount of concessions.
If they’re not, then they’ve made their own bed. Let them lay in it. I guess they’ll have a bit more time to do that.
The governor has plenty of options — could be widespread layoffs, to forced furlough days, to discontinuing their medical coverage, to freezing pension contributions, to maybe pulling a Schwarzenegger and paying them all minimum wage for a while. It could also be all of the above. Of course, since they don’t have a contract in effect, he could just lay everyone off and then let them reapply for their old jobs based on merit.
I think holding an “apply for a state job career fair” would be a great idea. Just imagine the visuals!
The unions think of this as a big game of poker, and they’re calling what they think is a bluff by the governor. The only problem is, the governor’s holding all the cards. All I know, is that it going to be an interesting week ahead.
PS I personally don’t think the governor is going to terminate all of the members of the union. Anyone familiar with the Roman concept of “decimation?” 🙂

Mike
Mike
13 years ago

I hope he does something hard and not the usual half-assed BS that he usually pulls.

bobc
bobc
13 years ago

Wow, the comment threads used to be a nice read, then along came Bill. What’s the matter Bill, haven’t been able to pull some girl’s hair lately?

Bill Tetrault
Bill Tetrault
13 years ago

Unions built this country, it was union hands, hearts and minds that do everything from providing for our shelter, to care for our sick to educating our kids. Unions are essential to the well being of not only our members but also the United States of America.
But do you rich white winners of life’s lottery do? Try to punish and degrade union members. You bait your moronic Governor to fire us. You disparage the hard work we do everyday for you.
All we want is to be treated fairly – this Governor has not done that. All we ask is a living wage for a fair days work – you deny us that. All we ask is for a small amount of respect for the value we provide – that is too much for you and the Republicans to provide.
All I can say is Thank God the democrats run things here.

Justin Katz
13 years ago

Yeah, well, Andrew may be a bit nicer than I am; the baking comment did it for me. It might be different if BT had ever offered a comment worth reading, but as it is, he’s gone.
Enjoy your fantasy back-room deals, Bill.

The Chorus
The Chorus
13 years ago

Bill –
Since it appears you’ve toned down the rhetoric…
I agree that unions have made a significant contribution to success of America. But the problem is that the entire paradigm has shifted. When unions were first established it was to protect the rights and wages of the employees because big business was shirking safety responsibility and basically shafting the common man. Well we now have OSHA and state labor commissions that avail services to employees and provide oversight. Unions are useful in that they offer and ensure that workers are adequately trained and aware of accepted common practices in their given fields – that’s good. But there are problems with unions – the also now serve to protect employees that are useless, lazy, do-nothing, job-milking bums. Are all of them that way? No. I’ve been in unions at various points in my life, but never got that good old feeling of “solidarity”. It’s probably because, while I always worked hard, I all too frequently saw colleagues working hard at not working. Come to think of it, many of those were the biggest union cheerleaders.

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Hopefully the Gov will give the Bill Ts and the rest of his Entitlement-minded Union pals that suffer dillusions of grandeour (the Unions built this country???) the opportunity to prove how useful, valuable, smart, hard working, industrious and …my personal favorite …self-sacrificing (in honor of Tom K.) they all are.
Indeed, hopefully the Gov institutes a mass lay-off, ala Reagan and the Air Traffic Controllers.
Then all these public-tit sucking leeches can go start their own businesses and / or get snapped up by employers just dying to have such top notch “workers” as these fools …NOT.
Bill & Co. are in for a real shock if / when they are forced to let the Free Market determine their marginal worth, as opposed to being artificially propped up by the diaper that is the Union.
Self reliance is NOT in the Union member’s vocabulary. Rather, like whining infants, DEPENDANCY is the only way they know how to go through life, yet Bill fancies himself a “man”??

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

These morons should just be glad they had it as good as they did for as long as they did with respect to the near free healthcare they’ve gotten away with for so long.
Lots of Rhode Islanders don’t even have healthcare, never mind Guaranteed Defined Benefit Pensions.
They are soooooo clue-less to what the real world is all about.
Off with their heads.

Ken
Ken
13 years ago

Monique, When I work for major RI Department of Defense in management, we were told to use 75% of salary for benefits inclusion in our pricing. With inflation I admit that might have been raised. However, your average $35,000 per year State of RI Council 94 wage might seem to be in the ballpark. Is that estimated figure before taxes and withholdings or after taxes and withholdings because if it is after than there will be 50% of Council 94 state employees on welfare and food stamps. Rule of thumb working in RI is to lower gross wage by 1/3 to accommodate for taxes, and contributions so $35,000 a year minus 1/3 would equal approximately $23, 334.00 a year salary take home after taxes and withholdings (state employees already pay percent healthcare and 7.5% of gross salary towards retirement).That would equal about $1, 944.50 a month for living expenses, such as rent, food, clothing, public transportation (or car, gasoline, property and insurance), electric, heat, insurance and any medical co-payments. National Grid just raised prices in RI for electric 21.7% and natural gas 10% and USA inflation is now at 5% average. The latest published price for a gallon of heating oil in RI (as published by state of RI Energy Office) is $4.749. If the person has a minimum 250 gallon tank to fill, which constitutes a $1,187.25 bill which subtracted from their monthly income leaves $757.25 to cover all the rest of their monthly bills. That leaves less than $100 a week to live, eat and pay additional bills. I think (might be wrong) you can live better in RI on welfare! I’m all for getting the best bang for the buck but to drive 50% of my workforce into below poverty level does not produce warm fuzzy global… Read more »

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Ken,
It is real simple.
We will pay them what we can afford to pay them, NOT what some Union “demands” we pay them.
And if they can not afford to be employed at what we are offering, then they are free to leave and take their “skills” elsewhere to earn what they “demand”, as last time I checked, ‘Ole Glory was still flapping in the wind and it’s a free country (i.e. NOBODY has a gun to their head forcing them to stay in their job).
They can leave tomorrow and there will be plenty of qualified people lined up and ready to take their jobs.
Remember Ken, the Gov’t does not exist to be a jobs program.
Let all these Council 94 Union rocket scientests pull themselves from the public-tit and go start their own businesses and create jobs paying what they demand, since it is apparently so easy.
Face it Ken, the party is coming to an end and all the noise you hear is just the Union whiners whining as they are being pulled from the public-tit.
Yes, there comes a time when we all have to grow up and become self-sufficient and self-reliant, as scary as that may be for some Entitlement-minded spoiled bratt leeches.
Off with their heads!

chuckR
chuckR
13 years ago

Ken
Working for a small company, we figured our raw costs for overhead were 40%. By that I mean benefits and taxes, but not cost of vacations, holidays, training, equipment etc. Actual overhead can’t easily be estimated for departments as varied as a government – making effective use of a heavy equipment operator’s time may mean acquiring another CAT at current depreciation rates against overhead, while a clerical position may need a small fraction of that cost. Each may need training, etc.
Here’s the deal – I think a lot of white collar gov’t folks should be furloughed and the rest get to work harder. I never worked harder than when my company had financial problems – seems I couldn’t tax my way out of it. Same deal – furloughs, layoffs – for union people and seniority alone shouldn’t protect them. We have age discrimination laws that can protect them instead. I have seen too many gov’t workers in ‘inaction’. If they won’t work, doesn’t matter whether they have one day or one decade in, see ya. Set standards, inspect and enforce them. Have the State Police make poster children out of a few no shows. Also, just like in the real world, the standard workweek for hourly employees is forty (40) hours, not thirty five (35) hours. Pay them the standard hourly rate (not OT rate) for the extra five hours, save most of the overhead. Oh, and no GD union business paid for by taxpayers – own time, own dime. The unionistas simply don’t understand how insulting these shenanigans are to the rest of us.

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Monique,
Are you dare suggesting that the gov’t institute a “merit based” system into it’s work force?
Silly girl!
Now how do you propose that such a blasphemous concept be reconciled with the Union’s ENTITLEMENT-minded way of life?
What next from you? A suggestion to Bob Walsh that his flock should not all receive the same pay based on the number of years worked, regardless of performance??
Have you not observed the smashing success that the current system has yielded?
Please, do everyone a favor and leave the ideas and solutions to the people that know best and who have proven results, like the Bob Walsh’s of the world.

Bob Walsh
Bob Walsh
13 years ago

Well, I see George Elbow has finally come around . . .

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Bobby, good to see that you are able to take time away from changing the diapers of your Entitlement-minded flock of Union dependents.
How’s that “sale” of Lottery “equity” coming?
I wouldn’t want to be you when your mindless membership wakes up jobless due to your misguided shepherding.

Bob Walsh
Bob Walsh
13 years ago

I am surprised that the arbiters of good taste on AR still allow your anonymous, cowardly and uninformed attacks.
We get it already – you don’t like unions, you hate that I have power and you don’t, and you are especially troubled that you are not only powerless to do anything about it, but so cowardly that you hide behind your pseudonym. While I generally disagree with them, at least the real men and women who express their conservative views on AR have the courage of their convictions and put their names behind their thoughts.
I look forward to the day when blogs implement standards, so readers can judge whether those that post are actually sophomores, or simply sophomoric.

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

George, think about this:
You and most of the anti-union posters here have forever called the rank and file a flock of sheep that does whatever Bob Walsh tells them to. Last week, that flock stood up and told Walsh it would no longer do what he and the leadership told them to.
Just a little something to think about, that’s all (complicates the storyline a bit, doesn’t it?).

John
John
13 years ago

Tetrault,
Please tell me you’re not a C4 guy. If you are, there is well and truly no hope for RI…

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Rhody,
Three things:
1) You really shouldn’t use a pseudonym, as Bob Walsh is then unable to ascertain whether you are a sophomore or just sophmoric.
2) Do you know what instructions Bob & Co. gave to their flocks down at the ole Union hall??
3) Do you not agree that by definition, a Union is far more akin to a mindless group of sheep than self-reliant individuals?

kathy
kathy
13 years ago

What part of there is no money in the state don’t these folks understand. A few rubber checks might get the point across. My husband’s family is a strong pro-union family, but they even realize that the public unions have gotten too greedy. Unions have their place in the work world by making sure people are treated fairly, and their workplaces are safe. This extortion route they have chosen to take it outrageous. The Governor needs to take a hard stand and set the bar high, if nothing more than to give cities and town leaders incentive to stop being bullied by these unions, and then they will stop bullying us. We are lucky to be able to afford our own health insurance payments, never mind paying for someone elses or giving them a buy back. The taxpayer has had it. Check out the For Sale signs, and it’s not all about the mortgage crisis. What are the unions going to do when the taxpayers leave and the businesses pass us by?

rhody
rhody
13 years ago

George, you just don’t want to give these people credit for standing up to Walsh, to the point where you have to make me an issue.
Kathy, are you entirely dismissing the mortgage crisis (which unions had zero to do with?). Individual families, and predatory lenders, both made very bad decisions.

Bob Walsh
Bob Walsh
13 years ago

Rhody – it’s a no-win situation for George Elbow since I advocated for the settlement agreement, and some unions supported it and some rejected it – it he takes a side, he supports union democracy either way.

Tom Kenney
Tom Kenney
13 years ago

Justin,
I commend you for banning Tetrault.
But………you continue to let “George Elbow” spout his anonymous and disrespectful hatred? Is it because Tetrault was ignorant AND opposed to your views and “George Elbow” is ignorant BUT in agreement with your views?

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Tom – Good to see you’re back. We (or at least I) missed you. I’m sorry they banned Billy-bibbit, as he was a walking / talking poster child for everything that is wrong with the Entitlement-minded spoiled Unions. In fact, he was a great fill-in during your absence (an absence, I presume, caused by you being busy “giving selflessly”?). Hell, Billy-bibbit was so good that he made even you look like a self-reliant, make-it-on-your-own-accord, merit based, independent-minded Free Market individualist. In any event, it’s just good to have you back. Perhaps you’ll now have time to answer the questions I left you with the last time we corresponded. Rhody – I’m not making you the issue. I was merely pointing out that you run the risk of being scolded by Bob Walsh for not providing your Name, Rank and Serial number. And with respect to Bob “supporting” the agreement, ask yourself this one simple question: Did Bob Walsh “support” this agreement with the same vigor and intensity that he brings to bear when he is opposing Teacher contracts across the State, employing ill-legal Strikes and the antics of his pathetic Assistant Director, Patrick “I Struggle with Basic Math” Crowley? Come on Rhody, you know damn well Bob supported the agreement about as much as I support Tom “Giving Selflessly” Kenney’s pal, Lazy-Ass Pauly “No Show” Doughty, collecting taxpayer funded wages & benefits for NOT showing up for 3+ years to the job that he was well paid to do. PS – Tom – I hope you, EMT and Mr. Morse have been saving your energy, as it looks like you may become very busy very soon rescuing & saving Council 94 members from the real world. Bob Walsh can help you in this regard, as he noted on another post… Read more »

Anthony
Anthony
13 years ago

Bob,
I do have a question for you. How could the Council 94 vote have been so one-sided after several weeks of negotiations?
This indicates to me that either that a.) union leadership was not soliciting input; or
b.) union leadership knew the package would get voted down, but proceeded anyway (which would justify Carcieri’s charge that negotiations weren’t in good faith).
While it can always be asserted that union leadership does not “control” the membership, such a lop-sided voted indicates that it doesn’t listen to its’ membership either.
Either way, this seems to be an internal problem for the union to work out. If the union wants to propose modifications for how the money budgeted for its members gets spent I don’t see a problem. But they should operate within that budgeted figure.

Bob Walsh
Bob Walsh
13 years ago

George Elbow is not only a coward, but a liar. If AR has any integrity, he will be banned, and those that run this blog should be embarrassed they tolerate his inaccuracies. He has crossed the line from petty insults into slander.

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Bob,
“Liar”??
You appear to be getting a bit desperate. Perhaps the pressure of a bunch of whiny unemployed Council 94 members is beginning to wear on you.
In what regard am I a “liar”. Please tell me, so that I can correct the record.
But, before you answer, tell us this:
1) How many school districts have gone on strike over the past several years in which YOU came out and publicly and vociferously rebuked such actions / tactics?
2) You are quite the man about town when advocating your socialist positions (you post on AR, you are quoted in the Journal, you write Letters-to-the-editor advocating / supporting nutty ideas like the “sale of Lottery equity”, you sit on do-nothing Pension Commissions, you appear on TV, etc.) So where were all your public commentary, letters-to-the-editor, TV appearances, etc. in support of the agreement leading up to the vote?
3) Did you not write that you “helped protect thousands of RI based jobs”, but refused to tell us what it was you were protecting / saving them from?
4) Lastly, are you and the NEA still employing Patrick “I struggle with basic math” Crowley, the self-admitted grand-father of the petty insult? Just curious.
Looking forward to, but not expecting, substantive responses from you.
PS – with respect to your “coward” comment, I will defer to you on making that judgement, as after all, you are an expert on cowards. You shepherd a flock of cowards too afraid to face the world alone on a daily basis, so who better than you to identify a coward.

Andrew
Editor
13 years ago

George,
You really are coming across like you’re most interested in stopping a discussion of the substantive issues before it begins – the same tactic I objected to in the immigration debate. Tom Kenney has no obligation to “complete” a discussion on any issues past before participating in this thread, so don’t demand it. (Also, Tom Kenney and “Bill Therault” are nothing alike. And Paul Doughty, Michael Morse or EMT have nothing to do with Council 94, so why bring them up)
Bob Walsh has always been upfront in describing his views, even when they won’t make for a popular sound bite (he’s never shy about saying, for instance, that he believes taxes need to be higher), so there’s no reason not to take him at face value when he says he supports the agreement. He has no obligation to explain every position he has ever taken in order to participate in this thread. And whether I agree with it or not, the prevailing attitude in our society is one of not discussing active contract negotiations in public, so a demand for reams of public evidence from anyone to support a position for or against a contract is not reasonable.
By all means, criticize the state’s public employee unions when you feel their demands get unreasonable. But stop using this forum to try to shout down anyone who voices a disagreement with you.

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Andrew, While I respect, to a point, your support of longtime on-again / off-again posters, Bob & Tom, I think, at best, you are over-compensating a bit, and at worst, you are letting Bob Walsh off the hook. 1) I wasn’t shouting in the least. If you want an example of “shouting down”, swing by a Teachers’ Union strike / negotiation session and watch Bob Walsh’s flock, in particular Bob’s Assistant Director Patrick “I struggle with basic math” Crowley (aka “The Finger”) in action. 2) I certainly wasn’t “demanding” Tom complete a prior discussion. “Demand” is something the Union folk do, as in “demand” pay increases that we can not afford. Re-read my post …I specifically wrote “Perhaps” Tom will have time to answer previously unanswered questions. There is NOTHING “demanding” about the word “perhaps”, and there was certainly no time constraint put on the benign request (i.e. I didn’t suggest that he should answer the prior questions BEFORE he completed his participation on this thread, as I am a patient man). 3) You are right. Tom K. and Billy-bibbit are nothing alike. That is exactly why I wrote Billy-bibbit “made even Tom look like a self-reliant, make-it-on-his-own-accord, merit based, independent-minded Free Market individualist.” I don’t think I could have made a more clear statement with regard to the two being nothing alike. 4) Given that Tom was the one that came out swinging, referring to my words as “disrespectful hatred” and me as “ignorant”, I thought I treated the ole chap with kid gloves in my response. Hell, in an earlier post, I even paid homage to Tom by referencing his self-described tag-line of “self-sacrificing”. What do I get in return …Tom trying to “shout me down”. Also, it seems to me that asking someone questions is just the… Read more »

Tom Kenney
Tom Kenney
13 years ago

I guess it was too much to ask to have him banned………..

Andrew
Editor
13 years ago

Oh come on George, your parsing of the difference between “demanding” and “not-demanding” would make the folks who want to make of huge issue of “discussions” versus “negotiations” proud, your point 3 makes no sense, the CCRI chapter of the NEA, which Bob Walsh is involved with, voted to accept the state’s offer, discrediting any conspiracy theories, and most the rest of your comment is the “Jeopardy” version of the ad-hominem attack — insults in the form of a question.
You’ve posted consistently enough that people get the point: you don’t like union guys. If there’s anything else, try moving the ball forward a bit, but you don’t need to repeat the same points over and over and over and over and over and over in every comment you make.
(And you can write a 3,000-word comment in response to this statement, but it still won’t change anyone’s mind, until you mellow out your tone a bit. Tone matters.)

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Andrew,
If you are suggesting I asserted “conspiracy theories”, by all means please be specific and point out the instance in which I did.
I merely responded to the claim by Rhody that Bob Walsh “supported” the Council 94 agreement. I posited that he didn’t and that unlike when he DOES support something, there appeared to be no credible evidence that he did support the vote.
And to use your logic, the CCRI Chapter of the NEA “has nothing nothing to do with Council 94, so why bring them up?”
More importantly, when someone (Bobby) calls someone a “liar”, do you not think it is fair and reasonable to ask the individual making the assertion to be more specific?? After all, I offered to correct the record if he’d point out exactly what I alledgedly lied about.
Relax Andrew …like Bob & Tom, I don’t expect you to provide a substantive response to straight forward questions.
Tom – the good news is that you are back. I missed you …really, I did.

George Elbow
George Elbow
13 years ago

Bob – we are still waiting for you to tell us what you saved those thousands of jobs from.
PS – I hope you don’t interpret the above question as an “ad-hominem attack”, as I am truly curious and I think that, as a Public Safety matter, you owe it to us to let us know what thousands of jobs need to be protected / saved from.

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