Lawbreaking Walker administration gets public comeuppance Friday | WisCommunity

Lawbreaking Walker administration gets public comeuppance Friday

[img_assist|nid=88615|title=Stick it to them|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=155|height=161]Scott Walker and his minions have since day one been spreading the nonsense that state employee grievance procedures have not been hurt by his union-busting law. He claims the civil service system has built-in workplace protections and there's no need for grievance procedures to be spelled out in collective bargaining with represented employees. Never mind that Walker has seized more direct control over civil service and administrative rules, or that -- based on his other actions and nonactions -- he obviously could care less about the well-being of the tens of thousands of dedicated men and women who work for the state government.

We know that in part because of the Walker administration's willful disregard of existing laws regarding administration of grievances. Not only has the Office of State Employee Relations dragged its feet on pursuing grievances filed months and years before the onset of Act 10, but the Walker administration also ignores its legal duty to report annually to the legislature on its outsourcing of public works to private consultants.

And that willful disregard of state law is, in itself, a major public employee grievance.

Each October, the Department of Administration is required to produce a report to the legislature on contracting out, according to ยง16.705(8), Wis. Stats. The Walker Administration has never turned in such a report and now the first one is seven months overdue. This is the same administration that tried in the last legislative session to end 2005 Act 89, the law that requires state government to analyze its own outsourcing practices in terms of efficiency. Indeed, Walker's team tried to kill Act 89 in the name of saving money -- ironically, through its business-friendly Governor's Commission on Waste, Fraud and Abuse.

News media and the public at large know all about how Walker cut thousands of dollars in annual pay and benefits to typical public workers in state and local government, but they seem clueless about how his onerous Act 10 has affected workplace health, safety and fairness, or how his fetish for privatization is secretly costing taxpayers.

Now, public employees have found a new way to publicize these injustices. On Friday, state employees and concerned citizens will gather at two Madison locations for a "Public Grievance Reading & Assembly." The organizers call it "Time for Sunshine in the Contract Mushroom Patch."

The events will begin noon Friday at:
* UW-Madison, Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St., Madison, on the front steps
* Department of Administration, 101 E. Wilson, Madison, at the front doors

From the event announcement:

State employees and concerned citizens are invited to join the GEF 1 Stewards Committee to shine a light on the shadowy mushroom patch of wasteful private contracts in state government.

Join the GEF 1 Stewards to say "no" to privatization that sends jobs out of state and makes our agencies a patchwork of arbitrary pay scales for the same work. Wasteful contracts are unfair to taxpayers and reduce the resources available to serve citizens. Where is the accountability? Corporations are in charge of too many key functions in our agencies. Where is the transparency? No one knows how many contractors are working for the state. The Walker Administration should follow the law, respect the public's right to know, and produce the report.


May 30, 2012 - 8:23am