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"Republican Plan in Wisconsin Will Be A Disaster" turns out to be a GODSEND!

Original post made by Chris, Amador Estates, on Jul 1, 2011

Wisconsin School District RESCUED by Republican policies, despite all the protests by democrats including union members and other protestors.

(excerpt below)
"This is a disaster," said Mark Miller, the Wisconsin Senate Democratic leader, in February after Republican Gov. Scott Walker proposed a budget bill that would curtail the collective bargaining powers of some public employees. Miller predicted catastrophe if the bill were to become law -- a charge repeated thousands of times by his fellow Democrats, union officials, and protesters in the streets.

Now the bill is law, and we have some very early evidence of how it is working. And for one beleaguered Wisconsin school district, it's a godsend, not a disaster.

The Kaukauna School District, in the Fox River Valley of Wisconsin near Appleton, has about 4,200 students and about 400 employees. It has struggled in recent times and this year faced a deficit of $400,000. But after the law went into effect, at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, school officials put in place new policies they estimate will turn that $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus. And it's all because of the very provisions that union leaders predicted would be disastrous.

Read more at the Washington Examiner: Web Link

This above is just another example of the failure of socialist democrat policy and the value of conservative principles.

Comments (15)

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Duh
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 4, 2011 at 8:40 am

The union agreed to the changes in their benefits. The unions never disagreed with the cost cutting measures. They disagreed with the removal of their collective bargaining rights. Please understand the whole story before posting misleading information, especially from a disreputable source such as the Washington Examiner. Did the National Enquirer not have the story?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Yet Another Teacher
a resident of Hart Middle School
on Jul 4, 2011 at 12:21 pm

It should also be noted that there was NO statewide budget deficit before Governor Scott Walker, a puppet of the Koch brothers, gave big business a huge tax break. Those tax breaks, which did not create a single new job in Wisconsin, created the budget "crisis" that gave Walker the political cover he needed to pursue his union-busting agenda.

There's even a recording of Walker talking to a comedian who was impersonating one of the Koch brothers. In that recording, Walker is openly obsequious with the "Mr. Koch" and makes it clear that he is the Kochs' errand boy.

But Wisconsin is a democracy and this is the man they chose to be their governor. As Californians did with the odious Schwarzenegger, they will just have to live with the consquences.,


 +   Like this comment
Posted by RestOfStory
a resident of Bonde Ranch
on Jul 4, 2011 at 1:38 pm

The union agreed to these concessions because they had to--it's the law! Sort of like agreeing to drive at the speed limit because you risk getting a ticket if you don't.

Even more interesting is the fact the union had previously used the collective bargaining process to dictate that health insurance had to be bought through a company, WEA Trust, created by the union.

By the way, unlike the Leftist Washington Post, the Washington Examiner gives the complete story ("reporting" rather than "journalism"). Thank you Chris for posting this link.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Laughing Out Loud!
a resident of Del Prado
on Jul 4, 2011 at 8:56 pm

Your "collective bargining rights" is what got us all in this fiscal mess in the first place. Enjoy your three months off with pay.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Yet Another Teacher
a resident of Hart Middle School
on Jul 5, 2011 at 1:37 am

Unions melted the world economy? Huh, and I always thought it was the reckless, greedy multinational banks.

Glad to see the P-Weekly is still full of "truthiness" :)


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Have Read Books
a resident of California Reflections
on Jul 5, 2011 at 6:22 am

The only variant of idiocy that justifies calling the Washington Post a leftist newspaper is one that still resents the newspaper's leading role in exposing Whitewater.

The only variant of idiocy that holds up the above story as an instance of 'good' journalism is one that is unable to grasp what reporting should be about. How many school districts in Wisconsin? But this 'writer' for the Wash Examiner can only find ONE that fits his ideological slant. (Sorry, Stacey, for using such a big word.)

Overall level of idiocy: difficult to find a comparable instance, anywhere.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Yet Another Teacher
a resident of Hart Middle School
on Jul 5, 2011 at 10:46 am

I'll hop aboard the Truthiness Train, Have Read Books.

Number of school districts in Wisconsin: 424
Number of Wisconsin school districts that will see state aid cut back this year: 410

"As expected, almost every Wisconsin public school district - 410 out of 424 - will receive less aid for the 2011-'12 fiscal year because of a statewide 8.4% general school aid cut, according to the state Department of Public Instruction, which is required by law to provide estimates to school districts each July 1."

"In previous years, school districts could make up for state aid cuts by raising property taxes. That's not an option this year, as Gov. Scott Walker and the Republican-led Legislature also reduced school districts' revenue limit authority - the combined amount they may raise through local property taxes and general aid from the state - by 5.5%."

Web Link

Scott Walker licks one of the Koch brother's Gucci loafers (he thinks):

Web Link

An excerpt from the phone call, in which "David Koch" aka Ian Murphy, incites Governor Walker to break the law and Walker says he has thought about it:

Murphy: Right, right. Well, we'll back you any way we can. But, uh, what we were thinking about the crowds was, uh, was planting some troublemakers.

Walker: You know, the, well, the only problem with that — because we thought about that.

Size of Wisconsin budget surplus (yes, a SURPLUS) before Governor Walker's tax cuts for big business: $120 million
Size of Governor Walker's tax cuts: $140 million

So if a budget crisis doesn't exist, create one and then use it to strip away the collective bargaining rights--aka the Constitutional freedom of assembly--and pretend you're too busy to talk to anybody but always, always, always take a phone call from your billionaire puppetmaster.








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Posted by More pension scandals
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Ginger Rutland
"Woe be to workers who blow whistles at CalSTRS"

"In 2006, Scott Thompson, a pension program analyst for the California State Teachers' Retirement System, received an irate phone call from a woman who claimed to be 91-year-old pensioner Acevia Craft. The caller was angry because CalSTRS had reduced her pension payment.

The pension agency had done so at the behest of the IRS because Craft had not paid her taxes the previous year. Suspicious because the caller did not sound like a 91-year-old, Thompson alerted authorities. It turned out Acevia Craft had died in April 2005 and her children had buried her in her backyard so that they could continue fraudulently collecting their mother's CalSTRS pension…

Thompson would seem to be the kind of tenacious watchdog a pension fund would want to retain. But less than a year ago, security guards escorted him from CalSTRS' gleaming new headquarters building in West Sacramento.

The letter Thompson's boss handed him states that he was being placed on an "ordered leave of absence," during which time he would not be allowed on the premises. Ten weeks later, Thompson was dismissed from state service, a dismissal he is now fighting.
In a declaration filed with the unemployment insurance appeals board, Thompson's former boss says Thompson was fired because he reduced a retiree's pension without authorization and, when ordered to restore the payments to their original level, failed to do so.

Thompson says he was fired because he aggressively worked to stop pension spiking – the practice of school employees padding compensation at the end of their careers to enhance their retirement benefits – and top officials didn't like it….

As an analyst in the service retirement division, Thompson had the job of reviewing and then calculating retirement benefits for school employees. As such he was in a unique position to observe spiking.

That's what he thought he saw in the case of a school superintendent from San Mateo County. In his last year as superintendent, the superintendent's salary jumped from $155,000 to $265,000, an extraordinary 70 percent increase…

The second case that caught Thompson's attention involved a principal at a charter school in the Los Angeles Unified School District. In 2003, she earned what most principals in the LAUSD earned – $120,000 that year. The last four years of her employment with the charter school the principal's salary jumped an extraordinary $32,500 per year, on average, to finish up at $250,000.

Because of this jump, Thompson says, the retired principal was able to collect a $327,000 lump sum payment from CalSTRS when she retired as well as $13,000 a month in pension payments, about $7,000 more a month than Thompson believes she was entitled to.

Thompson reported both cases to his immediate supervisors, then to high-level managers at the fund and eventually to the CalSTRS board itself. He says nothing was done.

In recent reports to the CalSTRS board, pension fund staff have acknowledged shortcomings in their efforts to prevent spiking…. The system relies almost exclusively on school employers to report compensation correctly.

Spiking at CalSTRS goes unaddressed even as the retirement fund faces severe economic challenges. As of June 30, 2010, its last actuarial valuation, CalSTRS reported a staggering funding gap of $56 billion, $15.5 billion higher than the previous year. "


Read more: Web Link


 +   Like this comment
Posted by CalSTRS is part of the problem
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 5, 2011 at 2:18 pm

Ginger Rutland


"Woe be to workers who blow whistles at CalSTRS"


"In 2006, Scott Thompson, a pension program analyst for the California State Teachers' Retirement System, received an irate phone call from a woman who claimed to be 91-year-old pensioner Acevia Craft. The caller was angry because CalSTRS had reduced her pension payment.


The pension agency had done so at the behest of the IRS because Craft had not paid her taxes the previous year. Suspicious because the caller did not sound like a 91-year-old, Thompson alerted authorities. It turned out Acevia Craft had died in April 2005 and her children had buried her in her backyard so that they could continue fraudulently collecting their mother's CalSTRS pension…


Thompson would seem to be the kind of tenacious watchdog a pension fund would want to retain. But less than a year ago, security guards escorted him from CalSTRS' gleaming new headquarters building in West Sacramento.


The letter Thompson's boss handed him states that he was being placed on an "ordered leave of absence," during which time he would not be allowed on the premises. Ten weeks later, Thompson was dismissed from state service, a dismissal he is now fighting.


In a declaration filed with the unemployment insurance appeals board, Thompson's former boss says Thompson was fired because he reduced a retiree's pension without authorization and, when ordered to restore the payments to their original level, failed to do so.


Thompson says he was fired because he aggressively worked to stop pension spiking – the practice of school employees padding compensation at the end of their careers to enhance their retirement benefits – and top officials didn't like it….




As an analyst in the service retirement division, Thompson had the job of reviewing and then calculating retirement benefits for school employees. As such he was in a unique position to observe spiking.




That's what he thought he saw in the case of a school superintendent from San Mateo County. In his last year as superintendent, the superintendent's salary jumped from $155,000 to $265,000, an extraordinary 70 percent increase…




The second case that caught Thompson's attention involved a principal at a charter school in the Los Angeles Unified School District. In 2003, she earned what most principals in the LAUSD earned – $120,000 that year. The last four years of her employment with the charter school the principal's salary jumped an extraordinary $32,500 per year, on average, to finish up at $250,000.




Because of this jump, Thompson says, the retired principal was able to collect a $327,000 lump sum payment from CalSTRS when she retired as well as $13,000 a month in pension payments, about $7,000 more a month than Thompson believes she was entitled to.




Thompson reported both cases to his immediate supervisors, then to high-level managers at the fund and eventually to the CalSTRS board itself. He says nothing was done.


In recent reports to the CalSTRS board, pension fund staff have acknowledged shortcomings in their efforts to prevent spiking…. The system relies almost exclusively on school employers to report compensation correctly.


Spiking at CalSTRS goes unaddressed even as the retirement fund faces severe economic challenges. As of June 30, 2010, its last actuarial valuation, CalSTRS reported a staggering funding gap of $56 billion, $15.5 billion higher than the previous year. "


Read more: Web Link


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Yet Another Teacher
a resident of Hart Middle School
on Jul 6, 2011 at 12:22 am

Gee, you liked that little horror story so much you posted it twice.

Ok, I'll make this short and sweet:

CalSTRS is funded by teachers. We pay our salaries to fund our pensions. Always have, always will.

Got it? That's MY money in the STRS fund, not yours. So quit your doomsaying.

The sky isn't falling and it never was, except in the Chicken Little world of the Tea Baggers.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Tea Party Texan
a resident of Parkside
on Jul 6, 2011 at 6:18 am

All the left can do is throw names at us. We've got the facts on our side. This'll all change when Michele Bachmann rides into the ovel office in a stretch limo.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by YAT???
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 6, 2011 at 8:41 am

YAT - Please answer this question:

Who picks up CalSTRS short fall if contributions are not enough to cover obligations?

I understand it will be the taxpayer, so we do have a say regarding this program.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Kathhleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 6, 2011 at 9:12 am

Truthiness, clever! YAT, albeit earned, teacher compensation comes from taxpayer dollars and the shortfalls for STRS and PERS would come from taxpayer dollars--increased contributions from districts and/or employees.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Blossom
a resident of Stoneridge Orchards
on Jul 6, 2011 at 3:24 pm

Eggsactly. Thats why me and my neighbors are setting up monitoring groups to track taxpayer money the teachers call 'there salary'. Like buying organic food for there kids. What gives with that? With my money mind you!!!!!!!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by RobinM
a resident of Foothill High School
on Jul 7, 2011 at 10:01 am

How can us taxpayers pay teachers when we are so busy giving those tax breaks to multibillion dollar corporations. How will they afford their private jets if we don't kick in.
Suck it up teachers, you are only responsible for educating the future generations. So what if the US is falling behind other countries in education, we need to set our priorities.


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