Teamsters

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Today's Teamster News 09.18.15

Teamsters
Hoffa Statement of Support of Bipartisan Effort to Repeal Excise Tax on High-Quality Health Plans  Teamster.org  ...Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa in response to the announcement of the introduction of a bipartisan companion bill in the Senate to HR 2050 which would repeal an excise tax set to be charged on those enrolled in high-quality health care plans: “The Teamsters support this bipartisan effort to repeal the destructive excise tax that is set to take effect in 2018"...
No deal after latest talks between Baumann & Sons Buses, Acme Buses and Teamsters Local 1205  Newsday  ...Talks continued early Friday morning between a Long Island school bus contractor and its workers to end a labor dispute and head off a strike that could leave 15,000 students scrambling for other forms of transportation. As of 2:30 a.m. Friday, negotiators for Teamsters Local 1205 and Ronkonkoma-based Baumann & Sons Buses Inc. still remained locked in discussions at the union's Farmingdale headquarters...
Teamsters Protest as Treasury Debates Allowing Pension Cuts for 1.5 Million Retirees  In These Times  ...About 300 angry Teamsters descended on Washington, D.C., September 10, demanding federal action to protect the pensions of union members threatened with benefit cuts. The retired Teamsters are among a group of as many as 1.5 million retirees from a long list of different labor unions nationwide that could see their pensions slashed under a new law quietly approved late last year...
Cleveland Bakers and Teamsters Pension Fund takes on Wall Street bank traders  Cleveland Business  ...The Cleveland Bakers and Teamsters Pension Fund is among plaintiffs in a lawsuit alleging that banks that deal in government securities rigged trading to boost their own profits. “The same analytical technique that uncovered cheating in currency markets and the Libor rates benchmark — resulting in about $20 billion of fines — suggests the dealers who control the U.S. Treasury market rigged bond auctions for years,” Bloomberg reports in describing a lawsuit...
EVSC Board and Teamsters disagree over form, will meet Friday  Courier & Press  ...After about a three-week hiatus, the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. and Teamsters Local 215 negotiation teams will meet again Friday to continue working toward a collective bargaining agreement, as well as a new wage authorization form. Earlier this month, the EVSC ceased deducting union dues and representation fees for Local 215 employees...

Global Labor & Trade
Finland Anti-Austerity Strike Shuts Down Public Transport, Flights As Recession Pits Labor Unions Against Government  International Business Times  ...One of the biggest strikes in Finland's history closed down ports, canceled or delayed flights and disrupted other transportation Friday, amid protests against the government's latest proposed austerity measures. With the Nordic country in a recession for the past three years and on track for a fourth, the leading center-right coalition there has tried to implement cutbacks that include limiting overtime and benefits...
Canada must be part of Pacific pact, automakers might suffer: PM  Reuters  ...Canada must sign up to a proposed 12-nation Pacific trade pact, even though the country's auto makers might not be happy with some of the conditions, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Thursday. Trade ministers failed to clinch the Trans-Pacific Partnership at a meeting in late July amid disagreements over sectors such as autos and dairy...
Harper Says Trans-Pacific Trade Deal Will End ‘Successfully’  Bloomberg  ...Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said he’s confident a Pacific trade deal that would stretch from Chile to Japan will be reached. Clinching a deal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership will form the “basis of the global trade network in the Asia Pacific for the generation to come,” Harper said Thursday in a leadership debate for the Oct. 19 Canadian federal election...
Japan has little room left to compromise on TPP deal: Amari   Fiscal Times  ...Trade ministers from the 12 nations negotiating a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) are expected to hold another meeting soon to clinch a deal, after failing to do so in Hawaii last month. The TPP would cover 40 percent of the global economy. "This is our last chance," Amari told a regular news conference. "If we don't have an agreement, a deal may be delayed for years given various uncertainties...
Obama sure of deal as ministers plan end-Sept talks on TPP  Today  ...Twelve Pacific Rim countries will hold a ministerial meeting later this month in Atlanta in the United States as they look to conclude years of negotiations on creating one of the world’s biggest free trade zones, negotiation sources said yesterday. US President Barack Obama on Wednesday raised hopes that the 12 countries could conclude the sweeping free trade agreement “in the next several weeks”...
Will TTIP be an ‘economic NATO’?  Politico  ...Back in 2012, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton hailed a proposed transatlantic free trade pact as a job-creating, growth-boosting “economic NATO” that would forge new ties between old allies. Three years later, hopeful presidential candidate Hillary Clinton appears less enthusiastic. “Can you make it go away?” was the only-half-joking response of her campaign chairman, John Podesta, to a recent question on the trade deal now being negotiated between the United States and European Union....
Europe starts putting up walls   The Economist  ...Hungary declared an emergency, sealed its border with Serbia with barbed-wire fences and began arresting those trying to cross. Police fired tear gas at them; 20 officers and many refugees were hurt. Growing numbers of refugees are now trapped on the Serbian side and have started evading the barrier by marching into Romania and Croatia. Hungary responded by saying it will extend the fence to its Romanian border. The cascade of events is likely to continue...
Migrant Domestic Workers Network a First in Jordan  Solidarity Center   ...Domestic workers in Jordan are set to celebrate the official formation of a worker rights network that includes migrant workers from Bangladesh, Indonesia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka. The September 19 launch is a first in Jordan and a rare move in the Arab region, where more than 2.4 million migrant domestic workers often toil 12–20 hour days, six or seven days a week cleaning homes, preparing meals and caring for children and the elderly...

State & Living Wage Battles
Poll: Wide support among N.Y. voters for $15 minimum wage  CBS  ...A new poll finds that New York voters support raising the state's minimum wage to $15 per hour. The poll released Friday by Quinnipiac University found 62 percent of voters supporting a phased-in increase. Thirty-five percent of the respondents opposed the idea. Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo is calling on the state Legislature to approve a $15 minimum wage...
9th Circuit rejects state's appeal, says anti-union law passed in 2011 was invalid  Spokesman-Review  ...The 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals today upheld a federal district court ruling that an anti-union law passed by the Idaho Legislature in 2011 was invalid, as it was pre-empted by the federal National Labor Relations Act. The law, which was immediately enjoined and never took effect, banned “job targeting” or “market recovery” programs, in which unions use funds they collect from workers to subsidize bids by union contractors on jobs...
Archbishop Takes Aim At ‘Right-To-Work’ Laws  CBS  ...Without mentioning Gov. Bruce Rauner by name, Chicago’s Roman Catholic Archbishop is raising concerns about moves to restrict labor unions. Blase Cupich made his remarks Thursday at the plumbers union hall on the West Side, before a union-heavy audience. He declared a society with a healthy labor movement is a better place than one where powerful economic interests have their way and the voices of workers are diminished...
California Activists Call for Fracking Ban  Truthout  ...The California Legislature approved an amended version of Senate Bill 350, a measure that legislative leaders and Governor Jerry Brown touted as "landmark climate legislation." In response, anti-fracking activists pointed out the contradiction between Brown's strong support of extreme oil extraction methods and his constant grandstanding about "clean energy" - and called on Brown to use his executive power to ban the environmentally destructive practice of fracking in California...
OUR Walmart Relaunches Its Campaign To Beat the World Retail Giant  In These Times  ...After four years as a growing, thriving voice of workers at Walmart, the Organization United for Respect at Walmart (OUR Walmart) re-launched itself on Thursday. Originally a legally independent, non-union worker organization that the United Food and Commercial Workers founded and funded, OUR Walmart will now have a different, still to-be-defined tie to the UFCW...
Paid Sick Leave, More Overtime Proposed For Mpls. Workers  CBS  ...Workers in Minneapolis could soon have more flexible schedules and more paid leave. One of the councilmembers behind a proposed ordinance says if it goes through, big changes could start early next year. The proposal would allow workers to know their schedules ahead of time and earn overtime if they work more than eight hours a day...

U.S. Labor
UFCW sees 'difficulty' with Key Food over A&P stores  Supermarket News  ...New York locals of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union were scheduled to meet today with officials of Key Food Stores for “the first time in a while” to talk about the A&P units the retailer intends to buy, a union spokesman told SN. He said the union has had “a bunch of difficulty” with Key Food in the past because of the retailer’s desire to cut back the number of full-time jobs in favor of more part-timers at the 17 stores it said it intends to buy...
UAW-FCA agreement reportedly includes $5.3 billion U.S. production investment  MLive  ...As part of a tentative agreement with the UAW, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is shifting some of its production from Mexico to the U.S. - and vice versa. That's according to multiple reports, such as one in the Detroit Free Press that says FCA plans to commit $5.3 billion to U.S. auto plants over the next four years. That will also reportedly help retain thousands of American jobs...
Target pharmacy workers form union, first in company's history  Reuters  ...A group of pharmacy workers within Target Corp's store in Brooklyn, New York, have won a vote to form a microunion, making it the first unionized store at the retailer since its inception in 1902. Earlier on Wednesday, Reuters was first to report that a group of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians won an initial ballot, 7-2, to form the union, according to a filing on the National Labor Relations Board website and union officials...
Another Shot Fired in the Great Immigration vs. Wages War  Mother Jones  ...Does illegal immigration suppress the wages of native-born workers? The evidence suggests that it doesn't—or not much, anyway. One of the data points supporting this is a study done by David Card of the effect of the 1980 Mariel boatlift on workers in Miami. Even though Miami experienced a huge spike in immigrants during the boatlift, Card found no significant impact on wages...
The Fed Keeps Interest Rates Near Zero  The Atlantic  ...The U.S. Federal Reserve has decided not to raise interest rates at its September Federal Open Market Committee meeting. The committee’s two-day meeting concluded with Fed officials voting to keep interest rates near zero. The U.S. job market has been putting in solid numbers in recent months, data that Fed watchers believed might convince the Fed to hike rates...

Social Justice & Other News
Trump: 'We're Gonna Be Looking Into' How We Can Get Rid of All the Muslims  Common Dreams  ...In a week that has already seen collective outrage in response to the treatment of a Muslim teenager in Texas who was handcuffed and arrested simply for bringing a homemade clock to school, the pervasiveness of Islamaphobic sentiment was on display once again overnight after Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump fielded a question in New Hampshire about what he planned to do "about getting rid of" all the nation's Muslims...
The Beginning of Trump’s End?  Slate  ...This debate might mark the beginning of the end for Trump, who struggled to tackle substantive questions on foreign policy, his advisers, and what he’d actually do as president of the United States. More importantly, he faced a confident Carly Fiorina, who slammed and tweaked Trump on his obvious ignorance of key issues. “I think women all over this country heard very clearly what Mr. Trump said,” Fiorina said about his remarks on her appearance...
Bernie Sanders Unveils Ambitious Plan To End Private Prisons  Think Progress  ...Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is officially taking on the country’s private prison industry. By introducing a bill that would ban government contracts with private prisons, the presidential contender is quickly becoming the loudest advocate for criminal justice reform among his competitors. The Justice is Not For Sale Act, co-sponsored by Reps. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ), Keith Ellison (D-MN) and Bobby L. Rush (D-IL), would prohibit the federal government from entering contracts with private prison corporations within two years of the bill’s enactment...
America's Need for a Third Reconstruction  The Atlantic  ...Ta-Nehisi Coates mournfully excavates how the carceral state is deeply entangled in the racial DNA of the United States, and convincingly demonstrates that, for all the talk of a Kumbaya moment in penal reform between the left and the right, the carceral state remains largely intact with barely a nick. Four decades ago, the U.S. had many similar structural problems found today, but it did not have such an expansive penal system...
Climate Expert James Hansen: The Planet May Become Ungovernable  Alternet  ...The repercussions of climate disruption are still not being acknowledged fully, warned climatologist Dr. James Hansen. Hansen — formerly NASA’s head climate scientist, now adjunct professor at Columbia University — is probably best known for bringing definitive evidence of global warming to Congress in testimony in 1988...
The recession hasn’t changed a damn thing: Wall Street is still making off like bandits  Salon.com  ...Just a few years after the financial crisis, a new report tells an important story: Federal prosecution of white-collar crime has hit a 20-year low. The analysis by Syracuse University shows a more than 36 percent decline in such prosecutions since the middle of the Clinton administration, when the decline began...

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