The Unions’ Guy

In effect, the Obama administration insists that some of the federal money given to the states is meant to go directly to unionized public sector workers in California:

The Obama administration is threatening to rescind billions of dollars in federal stimulus money if Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and state lawmakers do not restore wage cuts to unionized home healthcare workers approved in February as part of the budget.
Schwarzenegger’s office was advised this week by federal health officials that the wage reduction, which will save California $74 million, violates provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Failure to revoke the scheduled wage cut before it takes effect July 1 could cost California $6.8 billion in stimulus money, according to state officials.

The state lowered the maximum hourly wage of members of the Service Employees International Union from $12.10 to $10.10, and the SEIU picked up the Obamaphone.

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Pat Crowley
Pat Crowley
13 years ago

I know, I know…. cuz that is exactly how it works….
Are you really upset because people wages were NOT cut?

13 years ago

I’m sure the state of California will be just fine. They just need to cut services until people die. As long as the union guy gets his wage, well, I guess thems the breaks.
Maybe they can just let the fires burn themselves out too. Then the Obama administration can send in FEMA money to do fix everything.
Hey brother, can you spare a trillion?

13 years ago

… very good, John.

13 years ago

The Q. and A. below is from the FAQ section of Notice that the underlined portion of the act states that sometimes funds will go directly to a school, hospital, contractor, or other organization. People who work in a union are an organization recognized as legal and legitimate by the law of the land. So if you don’t like union people having their wages restored, you’ll have to lump it. Tough! For my money i.e., my taxes, the money is better spent on rank and file workers than on “The goons and the dinks, and the Company finks’ who used to intimidate the work force before unionization. Tough luck. You lost. Step back. Q: How will the Recovery Act work? A: Very soon, the different agencies — such as the Departments of Education; Health and Human Services; and Energy — will decide who will receive award grants and contracts. Sometimes the money will go to a state government; other times, the funds will go directly to a school, hospital, contractor, or other organization. Agencies will then deliver that information to the team. We will subsequently make the information available on, and you will be able to track where the money is going. You’ll be able to search by state or even by Congressional district; you’ll be able to look up names of Federal contractors or other recipients of Federal dollars; and you’ll be able to send in comments, thoughts, ideas, questions, and any responses you have to what you find. It would have been nice to have heard ARites express concern about the mine workers in West Virginia. Charleston, West Virginia Gazette, 1/27/08 Over the last six years, the Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration did not assess civil penalties for about 4,000 violations, according… Read more »

13 years ago

I wanted to comment to OTL’s challenge. I have to admit there is small part of his response which is reasonably valid, especially considering the source.
Government waste is hardly limited to Democratic or Liberal groups and OTL has a further point when he says the issue is really about defining what is considered wasteful spending versus efficient or cost-effective spending. There are different views among conservatives and liberals, but also much common ground about that which is wasted yet mostly reported on a straight partisan line.
With respect to this specific issue of the Obama admin insisting some of the federal money going toward wage cuts for union workers, I do not agree with that criterion. Yet IF the federal government is going to provide money to the states, it does seem fair that they have a say on how that money is spent. It’s just another symptom of the bigger issue of the federal government getting unnecessarily involved in domestic business operations.

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