Posts Tagged ‘Oregon’

New SLDs in Ore., Wis., set legislative priorities

Two assistant state legislative directors were elevated to lead their respective states’ legislative boards after a pair of retirements at the end of 2018.

Glenn Carey, SMART TD’s new state legislative director in Oregon, poses for a photo with his 10-year-old granddaughter, Shealeigh.

In Oregon, Glenn Carey, a member of Local 1841 and the state’s assistant SLD since March 2016, took over with the Jan. 1 retirement of Randy Russ.

Russ, of Local 1574, joined the union in 1999 and served just short of seven years as Oregon’s SLD.

“When Randy talked, people listened,” Carey said. “That’s Randy…not a lot of banter, but when he talked, we hung on every word. We listened. Most staunch union man I’d ever seen and (he) was a big brother to me.

“I am hoping to do a good job for SMART TD and keep the level of professionalism just like Randy did.”

Carey says two-person crew legislation similar to what was passed in California will be a priority in Oregon.

“We will get it,” he said. “The timing is right.”

In Wisconsin, William “Andy” Hauck succeeds Craig Peachy, who also retired effective Jan. 1. Hauck began as assistant SLD in April 2016 and is a member of Local 583.

Hauck said he’s taking over the state legislative board at a good time.

William “Andy” Hauck is Wisconsin’s new state legislative director.

“We have a new governor in Wisconsin — we’re ‘Scott free’,” he quipped, referring to the anti-union former Gov. Scott Walker, who enacted right-to-work-for-less and other anti-union initiatives during his terms.

Wisconsin is among four states that have passed state two-person crew legislation, so Hauck’s focus will be on bringing legislation forward on issues including taxi-cab legislation covering rail worker transportation; rail inspection reforms through the state Commissioner of Railroads Office; legislation covering safety lighting in rail yards and ensuring that full Positive Train Control (PTC) interface access is available to conductors.

“The regulation states that ALL crew members will be trained and have the capability to interact with the safety overlay system of PTC,” Hauck said.

Hauck’s predecessor, Peachy, hired out with the Soo Line railroad in 1974 and had his rail career disrupted a number of times because of layoffs. He returned for good in 1990 with the Wisconsin Central Ltd., a subsidiary of Canadian National that was successfully organized by the United Transportation Union in 1997.

Peachy, of Local 583 (Fond du Lac, Wis.), got involved as a local legislative representative, eventually being elected state legislative director in 2012 and then re-elected in 2016.

“It has been an honor and privilege to have leaders like Brothers John Risch and James Stem, who were always there to guide and direct me to be the best state legislative director that I could be,” Peachy said in a letter announcing his retirement. “The SMART TD Legislative Department is second to none due to our past and present elected leadership.”

SMART TD wishes Peachy and Russ the best in their retirements and Carey and Hauck success in their work to serve our brothers and sisters.

Sponsor may drop Oregon right-to-work bill after ruling

No RTWThe sponsor of a proposed ballot measure aimed at making union dues voluntary for public employees may well drop the initiative after receiving a politically unpalatable ballot title.

Portland attorney Jill Gibson said she is leaning toward abandoning the proposal after the Oregon Supreme Court upheld a ballot description that will make the measure harder to sell to voters.

The measure, which is being closely watched by the state’s unions, would end the state law requiring public employees represented by union contracts to pay dues regardless of whether they join. Instead, dues would be voluntary for non-members.

Read more from The Oregonian

Oregon working to pass pro-union legislation

The state of Oregon’s House and Senate have been working to pass bills that are labor-friendly.

Most recently, H.B. 3342 passed through the House and has made its way into the Senate. If passed, the bill would outlaw public sector union-busting. Public employers will no longer be able to use public funds or use public property to hold meetings whose purpose is to deter or assist union organizing.

Two other bills that have passed the House and are awaiting Senate approval are H.B. 2950 and H.B. 2646. These bills would allow workers to take up to two weeks of unpaid leave to deal with the death of a family member and would require prevailing wages on all construction projects on public university lands, even if donor-funded.

Another pro-worker bill in the House is H.B. 3390, which seeks to mandate that employers with six or more employees provide employees with seven days of paid sick leave per year.