Sunday, October 18, 2015
State broke as Democrats, unions party; stop the insanity
DIANA "DEEDEE" GRAHAM makes these points about the Illinois budget in this October 18 letter to the Dispatch/Argus. ..... marks paragraph breaks. "Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner is engaged in contract negotiations with Illinois state workers mainly represented by AFSCME (American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees). ..... Unions are demanding substantial undisclosed raises, news sources report as high as 13 percent. Illinois is broke and can't afford such raises. Contracts have expired and a strike is possible. ..... The Democrats in the Legislature tried to remove the governor from contract negotiations in hopes that an unelected "impartial" mediator would give the unions a substantial raise while bringing Illinois closer to bankruptcy. Signs appear in many yards reading, "We Support State Workers", while many cynics say "don't we all, and far too generously I might add". Pay increases for state workers will add to the pension crisis. ..... Are Illinois state workers underpaid? These figures from www.americansforprosperity.com/illinois provide some information. The average state worker receives $56,719 in salary while workers in the private sector receive a salary of $61,017. However, state workers receive fringe benefits of health insurance, pensions, vacations and holidays costing Illinois taxpayers $55,791 while workers in the private sector receive $19,725 in benefits. Thus, total compensation for Illinois state workers averages $112,710 per year compared to $80,742 for a worker in the private sector. State workers receive 39.6 percent more total compensation than workers in the private sector. ..... Illinois is facing bankruptcy. People and businesses are fleeing Illinois. ..... Yet the unions and the Democrats continue to party on with the few remaining taxpayer's money and want to spend more. ..... Stop this insanity!"