Today, the Indiana Senate concurred with the House version of Senate Bill 575.
It goes to Senator Mitch "Big Jerk" Daniels for his signature either this week or next. He will almost certainly sign it.
This is a huge loss for teachers here in Indiana. As I've been saying for some time the victory parties regarding union labor and public education in the Hoosier state were quite premature. In concurring with the House Version of this bill, the Indiana Senate approved measures that would:
* allow annual evaluations to be conducted by other teachers or contracted outside agencies
* eliminate the ability of a local associations to bargain or discuss the evaluation tool
* restrict collective bargaining agreements to wages and wage related benefits
* ban the bargaining of contractual hours or number of days worked.
* eliminate current contractual reduction-in-force processes
* eliminate contractual grievance procedures except in cases related to wages and wage related benefits.
I added the bold for the two worst elements of this bill. Do the parts in bold sound familiar?
They should, if you've been following the labor struggles in Wisconsin and Ohio.
I'm lucky in that my own local union was able to negotiate a two-year extension on my contract, and in that our union has a pretty good working relationship with the administration and the school board. Other locals were not so lucky, and will now see huge chunks of their contract left entirely to the mercy of the local administration and school boards.
Should such entities decide that teachers ought to work an additional forty-five minutes to an hour a day, at no additional pay, they will be able to insert that kind of language into the contract. And if the locals don't like that? They can get bent, as far as the state GOP is concerned.
This is a sad day for teachers in Indiana.
Indeed, it is.
But remember that it is NOT just Republicans doing this to unions.
Rahm "Corporate Whore" Emanuel in Chicago plans to unilaterally impose longer work hours and days now that the Illinois legislature has given him that power.
Gotta love a country where corporate contracts are sacrosanct, but employee contracts are worthless.
They call that kind of country a fascist country.
And the politicians who engage in this kind of politics are fascists - whether it is Mitch Daniels in Indiana, Scott Walker in Wisconsin, Rah Emanuel in Chicago, Chris Christie in New Jersey, or Bloomberg/Cuomo in New York.