Chariho School Parents’ Forum

March 5, 2009

A late night sneak peek

Filed under: 1 — Editor @ 12:39 am

This press release will go out in about 4 hours.  Just thought those of you interested in the East Providence situation would enjoy a sneak peek.

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: William Felkner
P.O. Box 2401
Providence, RI 02906
Tel: 401-228-6691
E-mail: info@oceanstatepolicy.org

 


 

THE SCORE IS IN – THE STATE LABOR RELATIONS BOARD IS BIASED TOWARDS LABOR… WANT TO LEARN MORE? GO TO OSPRI’S NEW WEBSITE!

 

 
“After the East Providence School Committee cut teacher pay, they quickly found themselves facing a hearing at the State Labor Relations Board. Now everyone is asking if it will be fair?” said William Felkner, president of the Ocean State Policy Research Institute. “Well, we looked at the data and I’m sorry to say that no, the Board exhibits a bias and favors labor the vast majority of the time.”
 
From 2006 to the present, the SLRB has heard 19 cases, seven of which we have determined to contain substantive rulings that impact management-labor interactions. Every one of those major cases was ruled in favor of labor. The total scorecard for the SLRB, including cases with minimal impact, is 15 wins for Labor and four wins for management.
 
Couldn’t management just be wrong all those times? When looking carefully at the basis for decisions, what we found was that when past practices support labor’s position they are controlling, but when they support management’s position they fall short. Every case is different but the weight that the Board places on various theories and precedent are like a finger on the scale, and there can be no doubt it is tipping towards labor.
 
We are not the first to make these assertions. In 2004, Governor Carcieri called for several SLRB members to resign after they ruled that child care workers should be unionized and considered state employees – a decision that was eventually overturned by the Superior Court.
 
“It is ironic that a year after appointing them, Governor Caricieri called for their resignations,” said Felkner. “But considering the news at that time that eight of the last nine SLRB decisions taken to the Supreme Court had been overturned, sometimes its best to quickly admit your mistake and take actions to fix it. Unfortunately, according to our research, nothing has been fixed.”
 
Recently, both the East Providence School Committee and the teachers’ union filed charges with the SLRB over essentially the same complaint. The School Committee provided over three pages of documentation while the union supplied two sentences. The SLRB sustained the charges of the Union as a complaint deserving of a formal hearing and denied the School Committee – a decision made behind closed doors.
 
“Not only is this apparent double-standard disturbing, but the breakneck speed at which the charge is running through the system is also raising eyebrows.” Felkner explains, “most cases take about 148 days to even be considered and an average of 319 days to get a hearing. This case was approved in 36 days and will have a hearing in only 73. According to our research, the process has never moved this fast.”
 
Cynicism about the responsiveness of government in Rhode Island is nothing new, but the Ocean State Policy Research Institute is committed to informed public discourse. Therefore, the Ocean State Policy Research Institute has developed the LRB Watch website (www.lrbwatch.org) to document and house our analysis of SLRB decisions and processes.
 
“We are pleased to provide this site for the public to learn more about the SLRB and decide for themselves,” said Felkner. “But we have come to the unmistakable conclusion that the SLRB lacks transparency and their decisions lean toward labor on every major case we have researched.”
 
About OSPRI:
 
Created in 2007, our work is focused on crafting sound public policy based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, and traditional American values. We offer timely research and analysis on important issues to be shared with elected officials, the media, business leaders, community organizations and individual citizens. In recent months, we have been responsible for such successful projects as the Transparency Train – A public financial and legislative information repository, as well as regular updates published and available on our website and companion blog.
 
About The Transparency Train:
 
The Transparency Train Web Portal (www.transparencytrain.org) provides access to a variety of websites designed to present public information in a Google-style searchable format. These sites include:
RI Data which contains every budget, payroll, public employee contract and monthly check register for all cities, towns and school districts in Rhode Island.
RI Votes which is an online database of legislation and voting records.
LRB Watch provides analysis and available information on the State Labor Relations Board.
RI Schools is an interactive website that allows viewers to create comparative graphs of school districts plotting various metrics such as cost per student, test scores and the number of employees (coming Spring 2009).
RI Donors will contain a “connect the dots” approach to viewing political and lobbying finances (coming Fall 2009).
Take Action, a “how-to” manual that shows citizens how to file Freedom Of Information Act requests for public information and what to do if they don’t comply.
 

### 

If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview, please call Parker Lacoste at 401/228-6691 or e-mail info@oceanstatepolicy.org.

 

THE SCORE IS IN – THE STATE LABOR RELATIONS BOARD IS BIASED TOWARDS LABOR… WANT TO LEARN MORE? GO TO OSPRI’S NEW WEBSITE!

 

 
“After the East Providence School Committee cut teacher pay, they quickly found themselves facing a hearing at the State Labor Relations Board. Now everyone is asking if it will be fair?” said William Felkner, president of the Ocean State Policy Research Institute. “Well, we looked at the data and I’m sorry to say that no, the Board exhibits a bias and favors labor the vast majority of the time.”
 
From 2006 to the present, the SLRB has heard 19 cases, seven of which we have determined to contain substantive rulings that impact management-labor interactions. Every one of those major cases was ruled in favor of labor. The total scorecard for the SLRB, including cases with minimal impact, is 15 wins for Labor and four wins for management.
 
Couldn’t management just be wrong all those times? When looking carefully at the basis for decisions, what we found was that when past practices support labor’s position they are controlling, but when they support management’s position they fall short. Every case is different but the weight that the Board places on various theories and precedent are like a finger on the scale, and there can be no doubt it is tipping towards labor.
 
We are not the first to make these assertions. In 2004, Governor Carcieri called for several SLRB members to resign after they ruled that child care workers should be unionized and considered state employees – a decision that was eventually overturned by the Superior Court.
 
“It is ironic that a year after appointing them, Governor Caricieri called for their resignations,” said Felkner. “But considering the news at that time that eight of the last nine SLRB decisions taken to the Supreme Court had been overturned, sometimes its best to quickly admit your mistake and take actions to fix it. Unfortunately, according to our research, nothing has been fixed.”
 
Recently, both the East Providence School Committee and the teachers’ union filed charges with the SLRB over essentially the same complaint. The School Committee provided over three pages of documentation while the union supplied two sentences. The SLRB sustained the charges of the Union as a complaint deserving of a formal hearing and denied the School Committee – a decision made behind closed doors.
 
“Not only is this apparent double-standard disturbing, but the breakneck speed at which the charge is running through the system is also raising eyebrows.” Felkner explains, “most cases take about 148 days to even be considered and an average of 319 days to get a hearing. This case was approved in 36 days and will have a hearing in only 73. According to our research, the process has never moved this fast.”
 
Cynicism about the responsiveness of government in Rhode Island is nothing new, but the Ocean State Policy Research Institute is committed to informed public discourse. Therefore, the Ocean State Policy Research Institute has developed the LRB Watch website (www.lrbwatch.org) to document and house our analysis of SLRB decisions and processes.
 
“We are pleased to provide this site for the public to learn more about the SLRB and decide for themselves,” said Felkner. “But we have come to the unmistakable conclusion that the SLRB lacks transparency and their decisions lean toward labor on every major case we have researched.”
 
About OSPRI:
 
Created in 2007, our work is focused on crafting sound public policy based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, and traditional American values. We offer timely research and analysis on important issues to be shared with elected officials, the media, business leaders, community organizations and individual citizens. In recent months, we have been responsible for such successful projects as the Transparency Train – A public financial and legislative information repository, as well as regular updates published and available on our website and companion blog.
 
About The Transparency Train:
 
The Transparency Train Web Portal (www.transparencytrain.org) provides access to a variety of websites designed to present public information in a Google-style searchable format. These sites include:
RI Data which contains every budget, payroll, public employee contract and monthly check register for all cities, towns and school districts in Rhode Island.
RI Votes which is an online database of legislation and voting records.
LRB Watch provides analysis and available information on the State Labor Relations Board.
RI Schools is an interactive website that allows viewers to create comparative graphs of school districts plotting various metrics such as cost per student, test scores and the number of employees (coming Spring 2009).
RI Donors will contain a “connect the dots” approach to viewing political and lobbying finances (coming Fall 2009).
Take Action, a “how-to” manual that shows citizens how to file Freedom Of Information Act requests for public information and what to do if they don’t comply.
 

### 

If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview, please call Parker Lacoste at 401/228-6691 or e-mail info@oceanstatepolicy.org.

If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview, please call Parker Lacoste at 401/228-6691 or e-mail info@oceanstatepolicy.org.

 

 
“After the East Providence School Committee cut teacher pay, they quickly found themselves facing a hearing at the State Labor Relations Board. Now everyone is asking if it will be fair?” said William Felkner, president of the Ocean State Policy Research Institute. “Well, we looked at the data and I’m sorry to say that no, the Board exhibits a bias and favors labor the vast majority of the time.”
 
From 2006 to the present, the SLRB has heard 19 cases, seven of which we have determined to contain substantive rulings that impact management-labor interactions. Every one of those major cases was ruled in favor of labor. The total scorecard for the SLRB, including cases with minimal impact, is 15 wins for Labor and four wins for management.
 
Couldn’t management just be wrong all those times? When looking carefully at the basis for decisions, what we found was that when past practices support labor’s position they are controlling, but when they support management’s position they fall short. Every case is different but the weight that the Board places on various theories and precedent are like a finger on the scale, and there can be no doubt it is tipping towards labor.
 
We are not the first to make these assertions. In 2004, Governor Carcieri called for several SLRB members to resign after they ruled that child care workers should be unionized and considered state employees – a decision that was eventually overturned by the Superior Court.
 
“It is ironic that a year after appointing them, Governor Caricieri called for their resignations,” said Felkner. “But considering the news at that time that eight of the last nine SLRB decisions taken to the Supreme Court had been overturned, sometimes its best to quickly admit your mistake and take actions to fix it. Unfortunately, according to our research, nothing has been fixed.”
 
Recently, both the East Providence School Committee and the teachers’ union filed charges with the SLRB over essentially the same complaint. The School Committee provided over three pages of documentation while the union supplied two sentences. The SLRB sustained the charges of the Union as a complaint deserving of a formal hearing and denied the School Committee – a decision made behind closed doors.
 
“Not only is this apparent double-standard disturbing, but the breakneck speed at which the charge is running through the system is also raising eyebrows.” Felkner explains, “most cases take about 148 days to even be considered and an average of 319 days to get a hearing. This case was approved in 36 days and will have a hearing in only 73. According to our research, the process has never moved this fast.”
 
Cynicism about the responsiveness of government in Rhode Island is nothing new, but the Ocean State Policy Research Institute is committed to informed public discourse. Therefore, the Ocean State Policy Research Institute has developed the LRB Watch website (www.lrbwatch.org) to document and house our analysis of SLRB decisions and processes.
 
“We are pleased to provide this site for the public to learn more about the SLRB and decide for themselves,” said Felkner. “But we have come to the unmistakable conclusion that the SLRB lacks transparency and their decisions lean toward labor on every major case we have researched.”
 
About OSPRI:
 
Created in 2007, our work is focused on crafting sound public policy based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, and traditional American values. We offer timely research and analysis on important issues to be shared with elected officials, the media, business leaders, community organizations and individual citizens. In recent months, we have been responsible for such successful projects as the Transparency Train – A public financial and legislative information repository, as well as regular updates published and available on our website and companion blog.
 
About The Transparency Train:
 
The Transparency Train Web Portal (www.transparencytrain.org) provides access to a variety of websites designed to present public information in a Google-style searchable format. These sites include:
RI Data which contains every budget, payroll, public employee contract and monthly check register for all cities, towns and school districts in Rhode Island.
RI Votes which is an online database of legislation and voting records.
LRB Watch provides analysis and available information on the State Labor Relations Board.
RI Schools is an interactive website that allows viewers to create comparative graphs of school districts plotting various metrics such as cost per student, test scores and the number of employees (coming Spring 2009).
RI Donors will contain a “connect the dots” approach to viewing political and lobbying finances (coming Fall 2009).
Take Action, a “how-to” manual that shows citizens how to file Freedom Of Information Act requests for public information and what to do if they don’t comply.
 

### 

THE SCORE IS IN – THE STATE LABOR RELATIONS BOARD IS BIASED TOWARDS LABOR… WANT TO LEARN MORE? GO TO OSPRI’S NEW WEBSITE!

 

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