AFSCME

afscme.org

AFSCME members spoke out at a Rockford school board meeting Tuesday and held a march  in favor of higher wages for bus drivers, paraprofessionals, and food service workers.  

Current wages for bus drivers are $16,181, $14,280 for paraprofessionals and $11,373 for nutrition services workers. Advocates  say current these levels aren't enough to adequately support  families, and believe Rockford Public Schools can afford higher raises.  

Jenna Dooley / WNIJ

A judge is encouraging Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner’s administration to keep bargaining its contract with the state’s largest government union.

Attorneys for Governor Rauner have argued the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, which represents thousands of state government employees, is making unrealistic demands in contract negotiations. They're asking the state’s labor board to declare negotiations at an impasse, which could potentially lead to a strike of state workers. 

AFSCME members don't want to strike, says spokesman Anders Lindall. But the union is laying the groundwork, just in case.

"We've got nearly 80 local unions of state employees and so they are having their conversations with their members, on the ground, where they live and work, to give them all the information and answer all their questions,” Lindall said.

Lindall says Governor Bruce Rauner is trying to unilaterally impose demands -- like pay cuts, and higher health insurance premiums -- on the thousands of state employees who are members of AFSCME.

 

illinois.gov

The Kewanee corrections site which Gov. Bruce Rauner is closing to young detainees will be converted to adult prisoner use.

The Republican's administration confirmed several lawmakers' announcement Friday that the 15-year-old facility won't be mothballed in July.

Corrections Department spokeswoman Nicole Wilson says the agency is just beginning to plan a transition as officials analyze best uses.

Rauner announced this year he would close Kewanee because of a declining population of incarcerated youth and a multibillion-dollar deficit.

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has vetoed legislation to allow an arbitrator to settle state-employee wages and working conditions if union negotiations stall.

In his veto message Monday, the Republican governor called the bill “dangerous,” adding it would replace his bargaining power with a union-friendly arbitrator.  

Ruling Democrats can try to override the veto.

AFSCME's state council Executive Director Roberta Lynch says the bill is a compromise to avoid a strike.

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