School districts, universities skirt right-to-work at a hefty financial risk

Teacher union officials in Michigan are pretending when they say, “It’s all for the kids”.  Desperate to hang onto their power in Michigan, are flaunting the Right to Work Law by negotiating legal extended contracts for up to ten years.  The real scandal here is that these contracts could cost these school districts, and institutions of higher education, millions of dollars in funding, while stealing millions of dollars out of hard-working teachers’ paychecks without their permission.  The number of districts is 41, and counting.

Kathleen Gray has the story in the Detroit Free Press.

House Republicans have voted for budgets that cut funding for the institutions and districts that signed contracts between Dec. 10, 2012 — the day that the right-to-work bills received final passage and a signature from Gov. Rick Snyder — and Thursday.

Under the law, any contracts in place before the law goes into effect on Thursday, would be legally binding until they expire, including provisions mandating that employees pay union dues. So school districts, colleges, even Washtenaw County employees, negotiated new contracts or extended current pacts to be in place before the law takes effect.

For universities, the consequences are huge, in the millions. U-M could lose up to $47 million and Wayne State University up to $27 million. Eastern and Western Michigan universities also approved contracts in recent weeks, but both said they feel safe because their negotiations were ongoing even before the right-to-work law was signed.