Government labor unions lost a fight with Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner yesterday.

AFSCME and other unions say the governor is making unreasonable demands in contract negotiations. But the governor and like-minded Republicans, such as Representative Jeanne Ives of Wheaton, say unions are asking for more than Illinois can afford.

"Some of you are going to be winners, and some of you are going to be losers,” Ives said. “And what you're going to lose is your livelihood, because there's no other way to pay for this."


A key vote in the standoff between Gov. Bruce Rauner and labor is expected in the Illinois House this week, as early as Wednesday.

Rauner has been trying to convince legislators to let him keep his power to negotiate with the AFSCME union, even if it results in a lockout or strike -- though Rauner has vowed he won't call for the former.

At the same time, AFSCME leaders are asking state representatives to stick with them.

Carl Nelson / WNIJ

The Republican's administration is negotiating a new contract with the AFSCME union, and both sides have said they're far from an agreement. 

Rauner has used his veto pen to reject legislation that could automatically land both sides in arbitration.

A vice president with the F-O-P's state lodge, Keith Turney, says that's the process Illinois has in place for police and firefighters, and it works.

Governor, Union Conflicted Over Contract

Jul 27, 2015

Governor Bruce Rauner's administration and the state's largest public employee union remain at odds on a new contract.

The two sides appear to still be far apart. A memo from the union known as AFSCME became public last week. It laid out several demands from the administration, including no pay increases and cuts to worker's benefits. The memo theorized the Governor was pushing for a strike or a lockout, which Rauner's camp has refuted.

Tim Butler is a Republican State Representative from Springfield, whose district includes a lot of state employees. 


Tuesday is "deadline day" for state government.  But one deadline is being given a month-long extension.

Tuesday is the final day of the fiscal year; after that, the current budget expires. It's also the final day of the state's contract with its largest public employees union, AFSCME.

Gov. Bruce Rauner and the union have met at the bargaining table, but AFSCME leadership has described the two sides are far apart.


Union workers protested in Springfield yesterday against what they call unfair proposals from Governor Bruce Rauner.

After six months of negotiating, state workers and the administration have yet to reach an agreement for contracts, which end June 30th.

"We do not want a strike,” Jennifer Desulis, a union member who works for the Illinois Department of Revenue, said. “We want everybody to have a resolution. We want a fair contract. We want services to continue on for the whole community, for the whole state."


Illinois's contract with the state's largest employee union expires at the end of the month, and negotiations with the governor are supposedly going badly.

Democrats are trying to prevent a potential strike, but the governor might have other plans.

AFSCME pushed the legislation so its 3,800 members would be able to continue working without a contract past the June 30 deadline. It's an apparent reaction to memos sent from Gov. Bruce Rauner's office to state agencies, asking them about what they'd need to keep running in case of a strike.

Amanda Vinicky/WUIS

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner's office appears to be preparing in case there's a strike. The state's contract with its largest public employees' union, AFSCME, expires when the state's fiscal year ends on June 30.

Illinois' largest public employees union has made an about-face in its attitude toward Governor Pat Quinn. Over the weekend, AFSCME leaders endorsed him during a meeting in Peoria. It's a classic case of going with "the devil you know."

Hold Up Continues For Union Raises

Oct 28, 2013

lllinois lawmakers have yet to fund raises for certain state employees. 

The raises were negotiated under the Blagojevich administration, but it was Governor Pat Quinn who, starting in 2011, said he didn’t have the money to pay them. The AFSCME union sued, and a judge ordered the state to pay, with interest.

Then, as a part of the most recent labor contract, Quinn changed course … even agreeing to ask the legislature for extra money to pay the raises. So far lawmakers have refused, but it could happen during their fall session.