Who’s getting shafted in Wisconsin?
The Milwaukee Area Technical College, like most of Wisconsin, had known about Governor Walker’s budget proposal for weeks now, but decided to vote on a new, budget busting contract for its teachers anyway (my bold):
The vote occurred against the backdrop of Walker’s proposal for sweeping changes in public employee union bargaining rights. The new contract replaces the current one that expires June 30. It cannot be overridden by the Legislature if Walker’s bill passes.
Clearly, the MATC union, which long has called the shots at the school, has every right to bargain hard – and try to lock in the best deal it can get for its 1,933 members before the climate for collective bargaining chills. The union claims it made significant concessions to help close the projected $23.4 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2011-’12. MATC says the deal saves the school $11.6 million.
But the board erred by not holding out for an even better deal on behalf of taxpayers, who pay 60% of MATC’s operating costs. That board, by the way, isn’t accountable to voters; it’s appointed.
To summarize: Wisconsin taxpayers pay the bulk of the schools operating costs, but essentially get no say in how the money is being spent. They’re hard-earned money is at the whim of greedy and parasitic unions who really don’t care about anything other than their precious contracts.
Someone’s getting the shaft in Wisconsin, but it certainly isn’t the union.