public employees

14 Stories

California Voters Slash Public Pensions

Public worker unions battled measures

(Newser) - It's been a rough week for public workers. Following Scott Walker's survival as Wisconsin governor, two major California cities have easily approved cuts to city employees' pensions. Some 66% of San Diego voters approved such a measure, with 34% against it; in San Jose, 70% backed the plan,... More »

Postal Service Wants to Cut 120K Jobs

It also aims to exit federal health, retirement plans

(Newser) - The US Postal Service is looking to cut 120,000 jobs—20% of its workforce—and pull its workers out of federal health and retirement plans, reports the Washington Post . USPS would replace those benefits plans with new ones of its own. The proposal, which would include layoffs currently banned... More »

Mass. City to Pay Stipend to Married Gay Workers

Because gay couples face a tax heterosexual couples don't

(Newser) - Some public employees with a same-sex spouse in Massachusetts face a federal income tax their heterosexual counterparts don’t have to pay—so the city of Cambridge is making up the difference. In the city, 22 public workers have put their spouses on their employer-provided health plan. But since the... More »

Wisc. GOP Tries to Yank Duffy's '$174K' Video

Polk County Republicans tell TPM to take it down

(Newser) - When Wisconsin Rep. Sean Duffy started taking heat for complaining that he was struggling to get by on his $174,000 salary, the Polk County GOP yanked the video of the townhall meeting from its website; now it's trying to eradicate the video from the Internet, reports Talking Points Memo.... More »

Rep. Sean Duffy: I'm Struggling on $174K a Year

Duffy complains about benefits when asked if he'd take a pay cut

(Newser) - Wisconsin Republican Sean Duffy is taking some heat from liberal blogs like Think Progress over an exchange at a town hall meeting last week, in which he assured constituents that his $174,000 salary wasn't all that great. A constituent told Duffy that his wife, a teacher, was being asked... More »

Ferry Workers Fight to Keep 'Vomit Pay'

Washington state senator says it's an unfair perk

(Newser) - Washington state Sen. Mary Margaret Haugen thinks it’s time to get rid of a benefit long enjoyed by the state’s ferry workers: cleaning up puke. Thanks to the so-called “vomit clause” in workers' contracts, they get paid double-time whenever they have to mop up after a hurling... More »

Laid-Off Worker Leaps to Death From City Hall

Costa Mesa maintenance worker among more than 200 let go

(Newser) - A 29-year-old city maintenance worker jumped to his death from the city hall building in Costa Mesa, Calif., yesterday, after learning that he was among more than 200 city workers who are to be laid off. Authorities did not identify the man, except to say he had worked for the... More »

AWOL Dems: We're Not Coming Home

Fleeing Wisconsin senators deny recent reports that they will return

(Newser) - Some Wisconsin Democrats recently seemed to imply they will return to the state even though talks with Gov. Scott Walker have broken down—but now they're now backtracking on those reports. Minority Leader Mark Miller told the Wall Street Journal the senators were considering a return as soon as certain... More »

Most Americans Back Collective Bargaining

While only one-third are firmly behind unions, most wouldn't cut benefits

(Newser) - According to a new poll, the nation is still on the Wisconsin protesters' side: 60% of Americans oppose weakening the collective bargaining rights of public unions, while 56% oppose cutting public employees' pay or benefits. Even so, only one-third of those surveyed in the New York Times /CBS News poll... More »

Obama Backs Letting States Out of Parts of Health Reform

Sticks up for unions in governors' meeting

(Newser) - President Obama intends to back legislation enabling states to duck some of the more onerous mandates of the new health care law—provided they can demonstrate that they could cover just as many people in some other way. “I think that’s a reasonable proposal; I support it,”... More »

Wis. Public Workers' Pay Isn't So Hot

Public employees sacrifice cash for benefits, stability, study says

(Newser) - Don't call the Wisconsin public employees greedy—despite generous benefits, they actually earn 4.8% less than comparable private sector workers, reports the Wisconsin State Journal . Public sector workers have higher salaries than average because their jobs require more education than average, too: in fact, a typical Wisconsin public employee... More »

Way Out for Struggling States: Bankruptcy?

Idea kept under wraps over market fears

(Newser) - As cash-strapped states scrabble to fix budgets and pay public workers’ pensions, some lawmakers are pointing to bankruptcy as a solution, the New York Times reports. States can't go that route currently because they're technically sovereign entities, but backers say it's a better alternative to what the Times terms "... More »

Town's Pension Collapse Seen as Warning Across US

When fund ran dry, it stopped paying its retirees

(Newser) - When an Alabama town’s pension fund ran out, it simply stopped sending money to its retirees—a decision that’s never been made before, pension experts believe. That left retired public workers struggling: Some returned to work, one filed for bankruptcy, and one died with no electricity or running... More »

Pat Sajak: Limit Public Employees' Right to Vote

Sometimes there's too much of a conflict of interest, he says

(Newser) - Pat Sajak says he doesn't allow family or friends to play Wheel of Fortune because it would be a conflict of interest. By the same logic—and this is where the slope gets very slippery—he wonders whether state and federal employees should be allowed to vote in elections on... More »

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