Friday, December 17, 2010

Have you ordered your tickets yet for One Wisconsin Now's alternative inaugural event on January 3rd?

“Rock the Pantry” will be held at the Majestic Theater on King Street in Madison from 7-10p.m. on January 3rd. 'Rock the Pantry will feature progressive speakers, DJ Andrew Larson from Saturn’s 8 and live music from Madison's Big Bang. Demand is high so order your tickets in advance at:
Tickets bought online are available for $10 each, or $5 dollars for students or for those with limited income.

All of the proceeds from tickets sold for “Rock the Pantry” will go directly to charity. Come celebrate with live music, a live DJ and terrific speakers as we “Rock the Pantry” at our OWN inauguration.

Tickets are $10 a piece and can be purchased at:

P.S.: Unlike Governor Doyle, who donated his inaugural proceeds to charity, Scott Walker is sending all his inaugural funds to the Republican Party. We've got to step up to help the charities Walker is leaving out in the cold, that's why we're giving all the proceeds from 'Rock the Pantry' to Wisconsin families in need. Buy your tickets now and help us raise money for this important cause!

One Wisconsin NOW
Scot Ross, Executive Director

One Wisconsin Now is a new-media online network of citizens from across Wisconsin committed to advancing progressive policy, leadership, values and ensuring equal economic opportunity for all.

Editorial: Legislative Charade

Citizens and workers take back seat to politics

By Neil Heinen, WISC TV

This week's legislative consideration of labor contracts for state workers was a joke. A bad joke. The lame duck session followed a month of threats and name calling and precious little research and - or thought given to good public policy. And then, regardless of your opinion of state labor contracts, two state Senators made it clear what they think of state employees and the citizens they allegedly represent by casting votes not on the merits, but to cause political mischief.

The votes cast by Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker and Senator Jeff Plale were cynical, disrespectful and unworthy of people we look to for representation. Whether they were trying to stick it to the Republicans, or more likely stick it to Governor Doyle and the Democrats, they ended up sticking it to the citizens of Wisconsin, who have yet one more reason to distrust elected officials and look for ways to work around them.

Source: WISC TV
Source Link:

Message from Executive Director Marty Beil

In part from AFSCME Council 24 Weekly Summary;

Wednesday afternoon and evening were most interesting in terms of legislative action on our contracts. We started out in the Joint Committee on Employment Relations where all Democrats, including Russ Decker, voted for adoption. Jeff Fitzgerald voted NO; and Scott Fitzgerald never showed up. The contracts then went to the Assembly for action. Your lobbyists, bargaining team members, and other leadership worked hard on both sides of the aisle to secure their approval. After a long day, the Assembly adopted on a vote of 48-Aye; 47-Nay, with every single Republican voting No. The contracts then went to the Senate for their action, where the motion to adopt failed on a tie vote of 16-16. All 14 Republicans and 2 Democrats (Decker & Plale) voted No...

Download, view, print and distribute the Weekly Summary in its entirety >>>

Union Leader Outraged at NO Votes on Contracts

This news story relates to AFSCME Council 24 Executive Director, Marty Beil

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Transcript of Senator Decker's Remarks Before Voting NO on State Employee Contracts

“In front of us today we have numerous labor contracts. But these contracts would not have been in front of us at this time except for the election results of Nov. 2. Some people lost in that election, including myself. Like it or not, state employees are going to have to negotiate four years of contracts with a new governor. Before I came to the Senate I negotiated contracts for bricklayers, and one of the worst things you could do is poke a stick in the eye of a new employer. Governor Doyle’s refused to call (the Legislature) into special session to approve contracts he negotiated despite a repeated request from many of you in this room. In 2002, former Governor McCallum made the same decision when he lost the election and held over contracts for a new governor and Legislature to act upon. If these contracts had been brought to us before the election, as they should have been, this would have been an entirely different situation. Let’s not forget right before the election Governor Doyle signed multi-million dollar contracts moving forward on high-speed rail. But within just a few days after the election, at the request of Governor-elect Walker, Governor Doyle stopped all state action on high-speed rail, recognizing that elections have consequences. While I would obviously like to have seen a different outcome in the election, both for myself and my Democratic colleagues, the people of Wisconsin have spoken and they have said they want someone else to make these decisions for them. There is no reason the next Legislature can not take up these contracts. Now that the election has been held and the voters have spoken, I do not feel comfortable casting a vote in favor of these contracts.”

A Must See Video of a True Democrat Who Stood for State Employees

We all know that two Democratic State Senators abandoned their party's value of supporting organized labor on Wednesday night and voted NO on the state employee contracts before them. We also know that one Democratic State Representative did the same thing in the Assembly and one Democratic State Representative failed to attend the Assembly 2010 December Extraordinary Session.

However, many democratic state representatives and state senator's stood tall and did not abandon organized labor and the tens of thousands of state employees they represent and voted YES for approval of the 16 state employee contracts reached with the Doyle Administration.

AFSCME Council 24 will be acknowledging the legislator's who stood up for state employees and argued like hell in their respective legislative houses for approval of the state employee contracts.

One State Representative caught our attention in specific and delivered a 12 minute speech that will tear at your heart and provoke your mind to think about everything he said. That State Representative is Marlin Schneider (D-72) from Wisconsin Rapids.

A video recording of his 12 minute speech to the Assembly in the 2010 December Extraordinary Session of Wednesday, December 15th is available through "WisconsinEye", the unfettered and unedited media that records government activity and events. We are unable to obtain a stand alone recording of the speech, but if you follow the below instructions you will be able to link to it through your favorite web browser and windows media player.

1. Cut-n-paste or click on this link:

2. Once at the page that the link takes you to, click on "Watch" under the heading of;
12.15.10 Wisconsin State Assembly Extraordinary Floor Session (Part 2/2)

Please Note:

a. After clicking on "Watch" a popup window will warn you about the terms of viewing the video, click on "Agree".

b. After clicking on "Agree" another popup window will appear asking you if you will ALLOW the website to open another program on your computer.

c. The program it will attempt to open is "Windows Media". If you will allow the website to open the program then simply click on "Allow", windows media will open and the video will begin.

d. Run your mouse over to lower left corner of the window media player and you will then activate the "seek" slider at the bottom. If you press your left side of your mouse and hold it down you will be able to advance the "seek" slider bar to the 43:40 mark. It is at this point that Rep. Marlin Schneider begans his speech.

e. Advancing the "seek" slider bar will allow you to not have to watch the first forty-three minutes of the Assembly 2010 December Extraordinary Session.

Please put the effort into loading this video into your windows media player and then watch the 12 minute speech that State Representative Marlin Schneider delivers. Listen carefully to all of the points that he makes. He makes every effort to restrain his anger about the current state of political affairs and the attempts to rest our state's economic downturn on the backs of state employees, but he most definitely delivers his points.

Here are some links to more information about State Representative Marlin Schneider:


Wisconsin Legislative Webpage:

Authority: Marty Beil, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 24 · AFL-CIO
Steven Williams, PEL Coordinator
AFSCME Council 24 · AFL-CIO
(608) 836-0024 Central Office (608) 487-2424 Cellular

Wisconsin Democratic Party Chair Comments on Senate Labor Contract Vote

Taken from Facebook Posting;

I always try to measure my remarks about other Democrats. But there is no hiding my sincere disapointment at the vote last night. The Democratic Party should always stand for working families, for our brothers and sisters in organized labor. Let us work to elect strong, progressive voices who won't fold because of petty disagreements but always ensure Wisconsin a better place to work, live and raise a family. -- Mike Tate

State unions fume over betrayal, prepare for future negotiations

After 18 months, more than $100 million in concessions, and negotiations that were painfully close to completion, union leaders again find themselves back at the table — and they're not happy about it...

This news story appears in the Wisconsin State Journal and it is written after conducting an interview with AFSCME Council 24 Executive Director, Marty Beil.

Read the news article in its entirety >>>

Summary of Legislative Action on State Employee Contracts

Wisconsin Legislature Fails to Adopt State Employee Contracts: Passage in One House is not Enough

On Wednesday, December 15, both houses of the outgoing 2009-2010 state Legislature met in an extraordinary session to take up 16 state employee contracts. While the state Assembly voted to approve the contracts on a narrow vote of 48-47, later that night the state Senate deadlocked 16-16, ending hopes for legislative approval this year.

It takes a majority vote in both houses of the Legislature for a bill to become law.

How the Assembly Voted:

The 48 “yes” votes were cast by most Democrats and Independent legislator Jeff Wood. The 47 “no” votes were cast by every Assembly Republican and Democratic state Representative Peggy Krusick of Milwaukee. A total of 95 votes were cast.

Although there are 99 state Assembly seats, one of the four who didn’t vote was state Rep. Mark Radcliffe (D-Black River Falls), who failed to show up for the vote. The other three who did not cast votes are three legislators who have resigned to take other jobs. Those individuals are Gary Sherman (D-Port Wing), Pedro Colon (D-Milwaukee) and Mark Gundrum (R-New Berlin).

Our thanks goes to current Assembly Speaker Mike Sheridan (D-Janesville) and incoming Democratic Leader Peter Barca (D-Kenosha) who did an outstanding job rallying fellow lawmakers in the Assembly to pass the bill. Many other Democratic members stepped up to the plate Wednesday to get the job done. State Rep. Marlin Schneider gave an outstanding speech in support of public employees. His speech can be heard on Wisconsin Eye at State Rep. Joe Parisi started the debate by introducing three Council 24 members, recognizing their service and sacrifice.

How the Senate Voted:

All Senate Republicans present voted against our contracts. They were joined by defeated lawmakers Russ Decker (D-Weston) and Jeff Plale (D-Milwaukee) in casting “no” votes. Sixteen Democrats present voted “yes” on our contracts. The 16-16 vote meant failure to pass the contracts.

Democrats had elected Mark Miller as leader for the 2011-2012 legislative session. Sen. Miller and all other Senate Democrats worked very hard to get the votes but came up short because all Republicans, Plale and Decker failed to support contracts that most had supported in the past. Decker betrayed his caucus as well as the thousands of public employees who were counting on legislators to approve the long-overdue contracts.

Download, view, print and distribute this summary in a printer-friendly version >>>

Author: Susan McMurray, AFSCME Wisconsin Lobbyist

State Employee Contracts Now in Walker's Court

Today, state employees have been emailing furiously to Senator Decker and Senator Plale, but appears the two democratic senator's have chosen to abandon state employees at a time when something as important as labor contracts needed to be settled.

There could be other avenues to still bring state employee contracts before this legislature, but after many phone calls by your union's leadership it does not appear that there is much hope for a successful conclusion to the 2009-2011 contract ratification by the legislature.

When either the employees or the employer (legislature in this matter) fail to ratify a contract then both parties need to return to the bargaining table. To that end, it does now appear that the state employee unions will be returning to the bargaining table, but the employer will now be represented by the Walker Administration and these continued negotiations will not take place until after January 3rd, 2011.

The Wisconsin State Employees Union met with all of their respective bargaining teams today (12/16) and have briefed them on the next step and have sent the bargaining teams home for the holidays.

Wisconsin Senate Adjourns Extraordinary Session

As of 10:05am, 12/16 Senate President Fred Risser has adjourned the 2010 December Extraordinary Session with no further action on the state employee contracts.

At this moment there continue to be high level discussions regarding alternative's for the state employee contracts. As new information is learned it will be posted here at the SEPAC BLOG and the SEPAC website.

Use the Poll at Milwaukee Journal Sentinel to Say Yes to Your Contract

Should these contracts be acted upon before Jan. 3?

Democrats who run the state Assembly are taking steps to hold possible votes on no-pay-raise labor contracts as early as Wednesday in a rare lame-duck session just before they lose power to Republicans.

SEPAC Note: The Assembly did vote YES on your contracts. Use this poll to let the Senate know that it needs to make a motion for reconsideration and vote on these contracts before January 3rd, 2011.

Vote at the Poll being conducted by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel >>>

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

State Employee Contract Status

The official status of the WSEU contracts will need to come from the Executive Director of AFSCME Council 24, but until that is communicated SEPAC would like to leave affected members of those contracts with this information;

On Wednesday, 12/15 JCOER followed by the Assembly approved the state employee contracts. The Senate failed to concur with the action of the Assembly voting in a deadlock tie of 16-16 and one not voting on ALL state employee contracts.

After the votes were tallied the Senate adjourned until 10:00am on Thursday, 12/16. Because the vote was a tie anyone voting can make a motion to bring the contracts back for reconsideration.

Visit the SEPAC website for additional information and to view the legislative roll call reporting sheets on each of the WSEU contracts.

Senate Dems Dump Sen. Decker as Majority Leader

It has just been learned that the Senate Dems in caucus replaced Sen. Decker as the Majority Leader and have elected Senator Dave Hansen (D-30) as the Senate Majority Leader.

Unfortunately, Sen. Decker and Sen. Plale continue to vote with the Republicans and as such all state employee contracts are failing passage at this time.

Contracts in the Senate - Failing to Achieve Concurrence

The ASU contract (AB989) just failed to receive concurrence in the senate, blue collar is facing the same demise at this time and the remainder of the WSEU contracts will most likely receive the same action.

Contracts in the Senate - Update

The senate is presently voting on a third reading of the various legislative bills for the state employee contracts and they are all failing on a 16-16 vote at this time.

Senator's Decker and Plale are voting NO on concurrence of the legislative bills.

This does not mean the end at this point, stand by for further updates.

Contracts in the Senate

The senate has reconvened.

Assembly Votes on WSEU Contracts Will be Posted Soon

We are working on posting the votes tallies for the WSEU contracts.

In the meantime, it was pretty much a party line vote with Democratic Representative Peggy Krusick (D-7) joining the Republicans and voting NO and Democratic Representative Mark Radcliffe (D-92) not attending the Assembly Extraordinary Session and as such did not vote.

Clarification of Senate Action on Contracts

The senate was taking a passage vote on AB979, the Wisconsin State Building Trades Contract and the motion for passage failed on a 16-16 vote.

Immediately after the action the Senate Dems went into caucus. Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker (D-29) voted NO on passage.

NO vote has been taken on any of the additional state employee contracts at this time.

Contract Update in the Senate

The Senate has just recessed into caucus after a motion for passage failed on a 16-16 vote.

Just a Thought During the Senate Debate

Supporters of the state employees are making very direct points to stop the attacks on public employees and stop the blame game for the economic downturn.

The best is Senator Bob Jauch (D-25) who points out that Senator Scott Fitgerald (R-13) who claimed to have voted for every state employee contract in his 16 years of legislative service, contracts that did have some wage and benefit increases and yet now he will vote NO for the first time for state employee contracts that have more than $100 million in concessions.

Excellent point Senator Jauch.

Contracts in the Senate - Update

Senator Jon Erpenbach (D-27) now speaking and supporting state employees and their requests to have the senate approve the contracts. He is reminding everyone that the state employees have given some of the greatest concessions in this contract than they ever have.

He is now saying that the top state employee, Gov.-elect Walker has painted an unwarranted target on the backs of state employees.

Contracts in the Senate - Update

Sen. Glenn Grothman (R-20), incoming senate assistant majority leader now speaking and denouncing the state employee contracts.

Contracts in the Senate - Update

Senator Scott Fitzgerald (R-13), incoming senate majority leader says he will vote NO on ALL state employee contracts. Senator Dave Hansen (D-30), incoming assistant minority leader is now speaking on behalf of ALL state employees.

Contracts in the Senate

As of 7:50pm Senator Scott Fitzgerald (R-13) is now speaking and admonishing the democrats who just pulled all contracts out of the Senate Org Committee and now have them on the floor of the senate for debate.

Wisconsin Senate Now In Session

As of 7:37pm, Senate President Fred Risser (D-26) has ruled that a quorum is present and the senate is now in session with 27 of 33 senator's in attendance.

Assembly Approves WSEU Contracts

All state employee contracts passed the Assembly on a 48-47 vote. The contracts are on their way to the Senate.

Authority: Marty Beil, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 24, AFL-CIO

Scott Walker Needs to Stop His Misleading Information

Gov.-elect Walker just concluded a 12 minute press conference this afternoon regarding the pending actions on state employee contracts.

His remarks continued his tactic of fear and intimidation and misleading information. This man is not a team builder or an advocate of team work, but rather a Totalitarian (meaning; the control of a single political person, faction, or class, recognizes no limits to its authority and strives to regulate every aspect of public and private life wherever feasible, in part) and I describe him as a "Totalitarian" and he is currently only the "Governor-elect", imagine when he has sole possession of the title as "Governor".

He is greatly placing fear into the minds of the citizens of Wisconsin that state employees are taking money away from them and that those who need medicaid assistance may lose benefits if state employee contracts are approved. He even attempts to place fear into the minds of state employees that they will face layoffs because of approval of the contracts. He never addresses the great concessions in these current state employee contracts and the fact, and let me repeat, "fact" that the state employees are receiving no wage increases and will be paying more for their health insurance and pension.

He also fails to state to the public that any costs, as minimal as they may be, were budgeted into the 2009-2011 state budget that began on July 1, 2009. Approval of these contracts need no additional appropriations are fully funded from monies already budgeted.

Gov.-elect Walker; "Stop with the Lies", start your journey as Governor on January 3rd, 2011 with some integrity and use facts, it may go a long way in winning a working relationship with state employees, the same people who will help you implement your reforms and deliver your promised services to the great people of Wisconsin.

Follow this link to watch the press conference that was recorded by "WisconsinEye".

This BLOG entry is the sole writing of Steven Williams, PEL Coordinator, AFSCME Council 24 and are not the expressed opinion of AFSCME Council 24, Wisconsin State Employees Union, its leadership or members.

Legislative Action on State Employee Contracts

At this hour the Senate is in recess for the Extraordinary Session. The Assembly is in recess for partisan caucus.

Sent from my U.S. Cellular BlackBerry® smartphone

State Employee Contracts

Both the Assembly and Senate will debate and vote on the contracts starting this afternoon.
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Scheduled Legislative Activity for December 15th

  • 10 am: Senate Democratic Caucus
  • 11 am: JCOER (recessed from Tuesday) Could be delayed, Rm 412E
  • 1 pm: Senate Republican Caucus
  • Indeterminate: Assembly Democratic Caucus

AFSCME Council 24 executive director Marty Beil warned today Walker will face "labor unrest" if Gov.-elect pushes for decert

"When you push a person to the corner and there's no escape, he'll push back," Beil warned following a news conference in which a string of union employees urged lawmakers to approve contracts negotiated with the Doyle administration. Beil accused Walker of picking up tips on "corporate extortion" used by Harley-Davidson, Mercury Marine and others to force major wage and benefit concessions with union employees with threats to move their jobs elsewhere if they didn't comply. He also accused him of political grandstanding for demanding a 10-day delay in a vote, saying he voted to approve contracts while in the Assembly on a one-day turnaround.

He said Walker has shown more hostility toward state employees than any of the eight governors he's worked with and said Walker didn't bother to respond to a letter he sent congratulating him on his win and asking to meet with him. He wouldn't speculate on how negotiations would go with Walker if the 2009-11 contracts carry over to his administration or what the union's approach would be, declaring of the agreements reached with the Doyle administration "a deal is a deal." Walker spokesman Cullen Werwie declined to directly address Beil's criticism, writing in an e-mail, "Governor-elect Walker remains committed to finding ways to reduce spending while still providing core government services." Beil also had a warning for Dem lawmakers, promising retribution if they decide to go Christmas shopping rather than coming in to approve the contracts. Beil didn't specify what kind of consequences they could face. "We're just saying do your job," Beil said.


Sen. Plale and Sen. Decker - Selling Out Public Sector Unions?

Will State Sen. Jeff Plale, a South Side Milwaukee Democrat who portrayed himself as a friend of blue collar workers in his losing campaign for re-election, sell out union members and sabotage their contracts as his final act in the legislature? (That's him at right with tin cup and "Will work for food" sign)

Read more >>>

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Senate Dems Will Try Again on Wednesday

Senate Dems failed on Tuesday to call for an Extraordinary Session.

We have learned that once again they will attempt to call for an Extraordinary Session on Wednesday @ 10:00am. We hope that this time the Senate Majority Leader, Russ Decker (D-29), will be in attendance to lead them through the process.

The Assembly did call for an Extraordinary Session on Tuesday. However, it takes both houses of the Legislature to convene an Extraordinary Session.

The Joint Committee on Employment Relations (JCOER) is scheduled to convene at 11:00am on Wednesday, but unless the Senate calls for an Extraordinary Session they will not be able to act on the state employee contracts, once again.

State Employee Contracts Stalled

Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker is AWOL from today's attempted senate action on the Extraordinary Session.

Senate Dems attempted to act without Sen. Decker, but Sen. Jeff Plale (D-7) declined to join other Dems in acting without Sen. Decker. The Senate was unable to call the Extraordinary Session today.

Governor Doyle could get action on the contracts, but for the moment appears hesitant to call a Special Session of the Legislature. This is the reason both houses are attempting to call an Extraordinary Session.

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WisPolitics: Beil warns Walker faces labor strife

For reason's unknown to AFSCME Council Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker (D-29) did not attend the JCOER meeting today that is now in recess.

AFSCME Council 24 Executive Director Marty Beil sends strong communication to approve state employee contracts... WisPolitics: Beil warns Walker faces labor strife

JCOER Moves Into Recess

The Joint Committee on Employment Relations has recessed for the time being.

No action was taken on the pending state employee contracts because the full legislature has yet to come into an Extraordinary Session.

It appears that the Assembly has moved action for an Extraordinary Session, but the Senate has not yet taken any action on the call for an Extraordinary Session. Both houses are required to take action in order to hold an Extraordinary Session.

The Senate is working on their call at this hour according to Senator Fred Risser who has asked the JCOER to recess until about 4:30pm.