Thousands of union supporters are rallying outside the Illinois Capitol to protest Gov. Bruce Rauner's calls to change collective bargaining policies.  A coalition of labor groups marched by the governor's mansion today on their way to the Capitol. 

Group says state can’t afford union pay raise

May 17, 2016

Members of a conservative think-tank rallied in Springfield today in support of Governor Bruce Rauner and his veto of a bill that would send contract negotiations into binding arbitration. The legislation is supported by AFSCME, the state's largest public sector union. 

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has vetoed legislation to allow an arbitrator to settle state-employee wages and working conditions if union negotiations stall.  In his veto message, the Republican governor called the bill "dangerous," adding it would replace his bargaining power with a union-friendly arbitrator.   

Lawyers for Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and the largest state employees' union are making their case about whether negotiations on a new labor agreement have stalled.

benchilada / Flickr/Creative Commons

The Illinois Labor Relations Board began hearings Monday on whether contract negotiations between Governor Bruce Rauner's administration and the state's biggest public employee union-- AFSCME-- are at an impasse. 

Rauner walked away from the bargaining table in January and wants the labor board to determine there is an impasse. If the governor wins AFSCME members would have to take the state's last, best offer on things like wages and health insurance... or they could strike. 

U of I planning layoffs for fall semester

Apr 20, 2016

The University of Illinois’ Urbana campus is making plans for possible layoffs, as a result of the budget stalemate.

In a memo obtained by Illinois Public Media, Associate Provost for Human Resources Elyne Cole indicates that some jobs – including some in Civil Service --- could be cut, effective at the start of the fall semester. A university spokesperson couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

AFSCME Local 3700 President Ann Zettervall says she’s seen the memo, which was sent Monday to some campus personnel, including some who are covered by union contracts. She says she’s just getting the word out to her members, who are mostly clerical employees.  

The Illinois Supreme Court will be asked to re-visit an opinion it just issued March 24. State employees' salaries are at stake. 

AFSCME, the union representing nearly 40 thousand state employees, is planning to ask the Illinois Supreme Court to take another swing at an opinion justices issued last Thursday.

The decision says unless lawmakers specifically appropriate funding, the state does not have to pay out raises employees had been guaranteed in their contracts.  Workers are waiting on about 25-hundred-dollars each.

AFSCME spokesman Anders Lindall says the union will aim to show arguments that were overlooked or misapplied.

The Illinois Supreme Court Thursday said the state does not have to pay unionized employees what it says in their contracts, unless legislators specifically appropriate the money.

The state and the nation's largest union of public employees will head to court over an arbitrator's decision that Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner was within his rights to order the layoffs of more than 150 state workers last year.

Democrats in the Illinois legislature approved legislation today to require arbitration for union contract disputes.

The Democrat-led Illinois Senate has approved a measure that would allow an outside arbitrator to settle state-employee wages and working conditions if union negotiations reach an impasse.

A controversial labor-backed measure has been approved by the Illinois House. The vote was 67 to 45.  It would let an arbitrator settle the stalled contract talks between AFSCME, the largest state employees' union, and Governor Bruce Rauner.  It would also prevent AFSCME from striking.

Illinois lawmakers are once again considering an intervention in state labor negotiations.  Contract talks have stalled between Illinois' biggest government labor union AFSCME  and Governor Bruce Rauner.  

The question of whether talks between Governor Bruce Rauner's administration and the state's largest union AFSCME have reached an impasse is in the hands of the state's labor relations board. 

Union leaders say Governor Bruce Rauner's move to end negotiations with Illinois' largest state employees union is frustrating and capricious.

On Friday ... Rauner announced that he was seeking an impasse in talks with AFSCME after roughly a year of talks.
Public school teachers aren't directly affected.
But Dan Montgomery -- who heads the Illinois Federation of Teachers -- says some of its members do work for the state.
Mongtomery says it was a knock to labor, especially given that it happened heading into Martin Luther King weekend.

More than 30-thousand state employees are members of AFSCME, Illinois' largest public employee union. Today (FRIDAY) the union says Governor Bruce Rauner has walked away from contract talks. Illinois Public Radio's Amanda Vinicky reports.


It was clear early on that Rauner, a Republican, was no fan of AFSCME -- listen to the nickname he once bestowed upon the union:

Gov. Bruce Rauner's administration is outlining a new compensation system for state workers that includes merit pay and bonuses for employees who save taxpayers money.

ilovebutter / Flickr/Creative Commons

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) - A large University of Illinois employee union has approved a three-year contract with the Urbana-Champaign campus. 

Local 3700 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees OK'd the pact tentatively agreed to last month. 

 The deal affects about 1,000 clerical, child-care, library support staff and other university employees, along with about 300 in University of Illinois Extension offices across the state.  

The state's largest public employee union remains at odds with Governor Rauner's administration on a new contract. 

Alex Rusciano / Peoria Public Radio

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The Rauner administration says it has reached tentative or final agreements on new labor contracts with several Teamsters Union units representing about 4,600 workers. The administration has reached agreements with Local 916, which represents 2,700 professional and technical workers at the Illinois Department of Transportation, and the negotiating committee representing more than a thousand highway maintenance workers.

The Fraternal Order of Police is urging legislators to override Governor Bruce Rauner's veto that could have major ramifications on state employees' next contract.  

Governor, AFSCME agree to extension

Jul 29, 2015

Governor Bruce Rauner and Illinois’ biggest state-employee union have agreed to a two-month contract extension. 

DEKALB, Ill. (AP) - Nearly 650 workers at Northern Illinois University have signed a petition and filed it with the state labor board asking to unionize. The workers want to organize under American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, which represents other NIU employees and about 5,000 other state university workers.

Gov. Bruce Rauner's campaign rhetoric was a turnoff for Illinois' public employee unions; he continually blamed "union bosses" for contributing to the state's financial woes. Now Rauner's making direct appeals to workers.

Associated Press

The union that represents Illinois prison guards says inmates at the Logan Correctional Center committed about 400 assaults since the lockup was converted to an all-women facility in 2013. However, Corrections Department officials are disputing the numbers. 

Labor union endorses Dillard for governor

Mar 5, 2014

Another major government labor union has endorsed state Senator Kirk Dillard for Illinois governor. It's the third such endorsement for Dillard in the Republican primary.

Illinois lawmakers still have yet to fund long-promised raises for certain state employees. As IPR'S Brian Mackey reports, it’s affecting thousands of unionized workers.

The raises were negotiated under the Blagojevich administration, but it was Gov. Pat Quinn who starting in 2011 said he didn’t have the money to pay them. The AFSCME union sued, and a judge ordered the state to pay, with interest.

State AFSCME deal could be null and void

Apr 30, 2013

Illinois' largest public employees union will take a new vote on a contract deal it had ratified in late February.