The post below is from our friend Bill Zettler. Below you will read yet another reason to vote no on referenda. The 20 million dollars given to politicians are your tax dollars working against you. As property taxes increase, teachers unions and the like have more money to buy politcal power from the legislators. It is time for campaign reform to include no longer taking money from the teachers unions and like associations that contract with school districts and essentially the state.
How do I love thee, let me count the ways …
When poet Elizabeth Browning wrote this to her husband Robert in the 19th century she was speaking of her undying love for him.
Here in Illinois we have a similar situation except it is the politicians who are worshipping at the feet of their most prolific political lover, the teacher unions.
And it is not unrequited love either – the teacher unions love to give money to politicians (over $20 million since electronic records have been kept) who in turn give money back to them multiplied a thousand fold. Oh, how romantic! It must be political Valentines Day.
Today we have more examples of this illicit love affair and it is regarding the recently passed law limiting teacher (and administrators) raises to 6% per year over the last 4 years of their career. School districts are still allowed to the exceed 6% limit but then the district becomes responsible for the pension liability beyond the 6% meaning the local taxpayers would have to be notified that another teacher has just been made a pension millionaire at their expense. Chicago suburban school boards much prefer taxpayers in Peoria and Carbondale and other Illinois areas pay for the obscene pensions granted to their teachers. Besides if they have to pay for the pensions out of local funds they might have to cut back on the salaries and the union would not like that.
The teacher union monster has mobilized their Democratic Party storm troopers for another all-out blitzkrieg of the taxpayer’s pocketbook. Here is a sample of the current attacks on this 6% limit law. The first one, SB2158, pretty much eviscerates the original bill. The others just add a long list of excuses to ignore the intent of the law.
The funny thing is, I thought the Democrats were the party of the poor people. They certainly seem to spend an inordinate amount of time, energy and money keeping millionaires happy.
1. SB 2158 - Increases that are part of a collective bargaining agreement would be EXEMPT from the 6 percent final average salary contribution. This can occur as a result of a negotiated salary schedule based upon the completion of a master’s degree.
2. HB4160 - The legislation EXEMPTS salary paid to the Regional and Assistant Regional Superintendents by the Illinois State Board of Education. Teacher salaries that are paid by grants received from the U.S. Government would also be exempt under the legislation.
a. TRS estimates that 14,000 members are currently paid totally or partially from federal funds (full-time equivalent approximately 7,000).
b. TRS estimates that 700 members are currently Illinois State Employees. (ISBE, TRS….)
3. HB4164/SB2150 - The legislation provides a 6 percent final average salary employer contribution EXEMPTION for payments or stipends a teacher may receive from National Board certification. Teachers will receive a $1,000 if they provide 60 hours of mentoring and/or $3,000 to assist candidates teaching in academically at-risk schools or schools located in economically disadvantaged communities.
4. SB4168 - The legislation provides a 6 percent final average salary employer contribution EXEMPTION for salary increases as a result of an internal promotion for which the State Board of Education requires additional certification. Additional certifications are needed for positions such as Principal, Superintendent, and Assistant Principal. As a result, any earnings due to an internal promotion received in the final four years of service would be exempt from the 6 percent final average salary contribution.
5. HB4160 - The legislation provides a 6 percent final average salary employer contribution EXEMPTION for the following scenarios:
a. Any payment from the State of Illinois, the State Board of Education, or U.S. Government
The legislation exempts salary paid to the Regional and Assistant Regional Superintendents by the Illinois State Board of Education. Teacher salaries that are paid by grants received from the U.S. Government would also be exempt under the legislation.
b. Internal promotion that requires additional certification by the State Board of Education
Principal, Assistant Principal, and Superintendent
Accepting additional duties outside of the normal workday, as defined in the collective bargaining agreement, contract, or employers’ personnel policies.
6. SB2147 - The legislation provides a 6 percent final average salary employer contribution EXEMPTION for salary increases as a result of movement to a position of authority over others within the department, school, or district. As a result any earnings due to movement to a position of authority in the final four years of service would be exempt from the 6 percent final average salary contribution.
7. HB4166/SB 2151 - The legislation provides for the following 6 percent final average salary employer contribution EXEMPTIONS:
a. National Board Certification
b. Master Certificate
c. Accepting school-sponsored or extra-curricular assignments, Coach, assistant coach, club sponsor, etc.
d. Movement to a position of authority within a department, school, or district
i. Principal, Assistant Principal, and Superintendent
e. Part-time staff increasing their workload
i. Increasing workload from 50 percent to 100 percent
f. Earned as a result of a negotiated salary schedule
i. Completion of a master’s degree resulting in a two lane increase in salary
g. As a result of the teacher
i. Accepting additional workload or accepting to tech summer school
Here’s the link on the : TRS website