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Alert – Reports of Union-Busting Canvassers in Capital Region
Dear PEF Members, In the last couple of days, we have received reports that anti-union door knockers have gone to the private homes of PEF members in the Capital Region. Many of these union busters have been shipped in from non-union states and they are spending the holiday season going door-to-door urging our members to leave their union.
While we know our members are sticking with our union, we also know that the special interests that pledged to spend $10 million attacking public employee unions will not back down any time soon. If you have an opportunity, check out the recent pro-union campaign.
I want you to know that PEF is here to support you however we can, as opposed to the special interest union busting groups that are sneakily obtaining your addresses. Over the Summer, these same subversives emailed all New York public employees at their workplace and now they are stalking our members at their homes. Have they no shame? Please keep in mind that PEF would never release your personal information, such as your email or home address, without your approval.
Attached, please find signs that you can print out and attach to your front door to send a message to any would-be union buster: “Union busters aren’t welcome here, I’m sticking with our union!”
We want to tell these union busters “Shame On You,” so if you can, snap a photo of the union buster who comes to your door and we’ll post it on our “Wall Of Shame”. Send your photos to: UnionBusters@pef.org
We know our union is stronger than ever, which is what drives our dodgy opponents crazy. This is the campaign that never ends, but it is one that is making us stronger every day. I am proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with you as we fight to defend our voice, our values, our union.
Sent: Saturday, December 8, 2018 5:44 AM
To: Spence, Wayne
Subject: Cost Benefit Analysis Update
Sent on Behalf of President Spence:
By Ken Girardin
Ken Girardin is the Empire Center’s Policy Analyst, performing detailed analysis of data and public policy in support of the Center’s research work.
He previously worked in the New York State Legislature. He joined the Empire Center in June 2014. email@example.com (518) 434-3100 ext. 103
The second bill, S383 (Robach)/A2202 (Bronson), would, among other things, require state agencies to perform cost-benefitanalyses before signing personal-service contracts with private firms worth more than $750,000. Instead of seeking “best value,” as state finance law now requires, agencies would have to prove the existing state workforce could not instead be used at an equal or lower cost.
Contracting with outside vendors can offer an attractive alternative to using state employees for anything from engineering design to information technology needs. State agency management, for instance, typically can’t have someone represented by PEFperforming work outside his or her title, while a consultant likely wouldn’t face that same obstacle. Contractors aren’t restricted by civil service rules and have more flexibility in promoting and re-assigning people based on immediate needs. And contractors’ livelihoods depend on the efficient delivery of a promised service, which does not exactly mirror the stakes faced by state employees.
The bill, a version of which Cuomo vetoed in 2012, is designed to create obstacles to outsourcing and privatization. In his veto message, Cuomo noted current law lets the administration consider “quality and efficiency,” something that wouldn’t necessarily be quantified in a strictly dollars-and-cents analysis.
It’s textbook rent-seeking by the Public Employees Federation, a government union representing about 50,000 mostly white-collar employees (and which endorsed Cuomo’s 2018 re-election after working to beat him in the 2014 Democratic primary). The number of state positions represented by PEF slid from 54,718 in 2011 to 52,335 in 2017, of which only about 50,000 were filled last year. Essentially any new obstacle stifling the use of outside contractors would ultimately benefit the union monetarily.
PEF has similarly crusaded against the expanded use of the design-build construction process, since design work is performed by outside consultants instead of public employees (read: dues-paying PEF members). A concession to PEF of this bill’s nature would signal the governor is backing away from these and other measures that have helped trim costs.
Cuomo has until Friday, December 7 to act on the bills.
For the most part, consulting work is done by professionals, i.e. it is the work that PEF members would otherwise perform.
The Agencies included herein were those with the greatest dollar-amounts of contracted out consulting work during SFY 2015-16. Unfortunately, there are some holes in the information. While contractors are legally required to annually submit Form data, there is no current penalty for not doing so.
Nonetheless, as you will see, consultants are routinely paid more for the work they do, than corresponding State employees.
Obviously, while our analysis looks at the contracts, we cannot know what additional expenses the state agencies must employ to oversee these contracts, but we know that it is not insignificant. This just provides further evidence of the need for Cost/Benefit legislation.
Nonetheless, and in the mean time, this is information that you may find most useful to raise at statewide Labor/Management.
Kevin E. Jones
518-785-1900 ext. 287
Director of Civil Service
Enforcement & Research
Public Employees Federation
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PEF Membership Benefits Programs:
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Effective immediately, PEF shall not provide representation to non-members except as required by Civil Service Law section section 209-a, as amended. Namely, PEF shall not provide representation to non-members: (i) during questioning by the employer, (ii) in statutory or administrative proceedings or to enforce statutory or regulatory rights, or (iii) in any stage of a grievance, arbitration or other contractual process concerning the evaluation or discipline of a public employee where the non-member is permitted to proceed without the employee organization and be represented by his or her own advocate.
PEF will not provide representation in the above-referenced matters unless the individual is an active, dues paying PEF member at the time of the conduct which is the subject of the questioning, proceeding, conduct, evaluation or other action at issue, and remains an active dues paying PEF member during the course of the representation.