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DeSantis To Deliver Blow To Teachers Unions As Bill Removing Automatic Union Deductions Heads To His Desk

DeSantis To Deliver Blow To Teachers Unions As Bill Removing Automatic Union Deductions Heads To His Desk

Teachers will need to opt-in to a union and be informed that their job is not dependent on union membership

Florida governor Ron DeSantis is not playing around when it comes to making and keeping Florida free. His latest effort is geared toward empowering teachers in the state who do not wish to be in a union.

In support of the Sunshine State’s right to work status, the Florida legislature has passed a bill removing the automatic deductions of union dues/fees from paychecks. Those teachers who wish to be in a union and continue to pay their union fees/dues will be able to do so, of course.

DeSantis outlined his vision for the bill back in January.

The bill is now reportedly on its way to DeSantis’ desk for his signature.

Florida’s Voice reports:

The Florida Legislature passed a bill to prohibit some unions from directly withdrawing funds from public employee paychecks.

It is on the way to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ desk for his signature.

Instead, a public employee, such as a teacher, would need to opt into a union and send payments. The legislation does not apply to law enforcement officers, correctional officers and firefighters.

The House gave final approval to the bill 72-44 Wednesday after the Senate approved it 23-17 March 29. Some Republicans from both chambers voted against the DeSantis-backed proposal.

Under this bill, beginning July 1, a public employee who desires to join a union must sign a membership authorization form that contains an acknowledgement that Florida is a “right to work” state.

The form would outline that union membership and payment of union dues is not required as a condition of employment.

The National Review has more:

Unions would be required to notify members every year of their membership costs and union members would not be allowed to distribute union literature at work. Additionally, union officials would be prohibited from performing union business during their working hours at their taxpayer-funded jobs.

The bill would also require unions to represent at least 60 percent of the employees eligible for representation. Unions that fail to meet the threshold would be decertified and would have to petition the Public Employees Relation Commission (PERC) for recertification.

Unions would also be required to submit audited financial reports to the state yearly and to include an annual audited financial statement in its registration renewal application. The bill would also lay out salary restrictions that would ensure that no union leader could be paid more than the union’s highest-paid member.

Needless to say, people have thoughts.


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retiredcantbefired | April 30, 2023 at 7:45 pm

Overdue legislation. Florida does another thing right.

During Republican administrations, “mandatory” federal labor posters tend to have clear statements about employees’ “Beck rights” — their rights not to belong to a union in forced-unionization states, as long as they pay the “administrative” portion of their union dues as a fee (as opposed to the portion that goes into campaigning for Democrats).

During Democrat administrations, this language vanishes:

Beck rights notifications have changed over the years. The posting by all employers was required under George H.W. Bush, rescinded under Bill Clinton, reinstated by George W. Bush, and rescinded again under Barack Obama.

    Aarradin in reply to henrybowman. | May 1, 2023 at 9:43 pm

    I live in VA and have union employees. One of whom came to me about his “Beck” rights – he wanted the refund of that portion of his union dues that his union was spending on politics in support of candidates and policies he opposed.

    After two years of fighting, we were right back where we started: his only option was to quit the union (we’re a “right to work” state).

    So, SCOTUS has decided a case stating that you have to be able to get refunded that part of your union dues that goes towards politics, but in actual practice there is no mechanism for that to ever happen.

Opt-out has been a insidious practice of the left, placing undue burden on the objector.

Properly posed, the burden of persuasion should always, always, be on the proponent of any program. If, as the left proclaims, their ideas and programs are beneficial for the individual and society at large, then they will have no problem getting subscribers to sign up.

But they know that they can’t meet that burden, explaining why they fall back on the D default setting – FORCE.

    henrybowman in reply to pfg. | May 1, 2023 at 1:22 am

    Everything on the left is about the hive mentality — solidarity uber alles. They claim that unions –just like fake vaccines — won’t magically work unless EVERYBODY belongs to them. So in various states, union membership is mandatory if a corporation’s labor force is “represented” by the union, whether any given employee wants to belong or not. It’s another Democrat “idea so obviously good for everybody that opting out is forbidden.”

Quite a lot of policy victories stacking up in FL under DeSantis. The culture war issues matter. The willingness to engage, gather support and pursue the goal all the way to the win is far more important than an exciting but ultimately somewhat disappointing rhetorical flourish which doesn’t run through tape to victory b/c reasons.

    The Gentle Grizzly in reply to CommoChief. | April 30, 2023 at 9:56 pm

    And, not a single game of 4D chess in sight.

    CommoChief in reply to CommoChief. | April 30, 2023 at 10:12 pm

    Someone seems to prefer empty rhetoric to notching political wins. It has always made me curious how some people prefer other things than victory.

    There’s a line from the movie the Rock that sums it up:
    ‘Winners win then they go home and eff the prom queen while losers talk about trying hard and doing their best’. Seems apt enough to me.

This is exactly what Gov Scott Walker did in Wisconsin. It is very simple. Pass a law that prevents union dues as a payroll deduction.
Which was always a mystery. Why does the employer get forced to do the collecting for the Union?

When walker did it, union membership cratered. The membership could not be bothered to write and mail a check.

    gonzotx in reply to iowan2. | April 30, 2023 at 9:32 pm

    Yes did it many years ago

    henrybowman in reply to iowan2. | May 1, 2023 at 1:24 am

    “Why does the employer get forced to do the collecting for the Union?”
    For the same reason that your federal taxes get payroll-deducted.
    It takes the choice out of your hands; plus, if you had to pay in one whack and realized the enormity of the theft, you’d have an infarction, an insurrection, or both.

      Dimsdale in reply to henrybowman. | May 1, 2023 at 7:23 am

      Death by a thousand (and counting) deductions.

        henrybowman in reply to Dimsdale. | May 1, 2023 at 4:52 pm

        Hah. Today, my pension (a real old fashioned pension) hit my bank account… in a reduced amount. Turns out my state decided to “reset” everybody’s withholding elections this month without any warning. I can re-elect for no withholding, but meanwhile they get to hold this money for a year. They get their blood any way they can.

filiusdextris | April 30, 2023 at 8:57 pm

Florida teacher unions had no power when I was down there. This site claims that Florida has the 4th lowest teacher salary amount in the nation. I love DeSantis, and maybe this new law will allow Florida to pay more to teachers, but it strikes me more as window dressing.

    Florida has a comparatively low cost of living and no state income tax. This “argument” is a problem when discussing salaries because other things aren’t taken into account (real estate cost, property insurance/taxes, state income tax, even basic essentials like food and energy costs).

    I glanced at your linked ‘source,’ and it’s clear that they don’t take any of that into account which makes the comparison specious and utterly useless. Comparing New York salaries with those in Mississippi (where you can buy a decent house for a tiny fraction of the price of one in New York state–let alone a home in NYC!) is ridiculous on its face.

    One size fits all doesn’t work, and it was never intended to by our Founders. So no, this is not window dressing.

    Then again, I think all public unions should be banned immediately and forever.

      OwenKellogg-Engineer in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | April 30, 2023 at 10:54 pm

      I don’t disagree one bit. In fact, I’ll raise your ban, and encourage our bloated school board admin staff and admin budget be brought in line so that it is just a mere fraction of overall operation expense. Too many countries here are way overloaded on the top end.

      Ghostrider in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | April 30, 2023 at 11:12 pm

      Fuzzy, I intend to vote for the person who pledges to not only ban public sector unions but eliminate the US Department of Education.

        Oooh, one of my long-held dreams! I would love to see that gone. Along with a bunch of alphabet agencies, actually. 😛

        henrybowman in reply to Ghostrider. | May 1, 2023 at 1:27 am

        Hell, I voted for that person three times, it was a different guy each time, and none of them did it. Short of an insurrection restoration of constitutional government, this is never going to happen.

        herm2416 in reply to Ghostrider. | May 1, 2023 at 1:29 am

        Ramiswamy said he would do that on Day One.

          He can’t do it on day one or any other day; the Dept. of Education was created by a law (signed by Jimmy Carter), so it would take a repeal of that law to abolish it. Not saying it’s impossible (I still have hope it will happen), but it is not something any presidential candidate should state they will abolish on day one. It’s simply not possible. Sounds good, but can’t be done from the executive.

          I suppose the executive could gut it somehow, not sure how that might work, but if a candidate were serious about ridding us of that monstrosity, he’d give some idea he knows how to do it. I’m tired of all these empty promises on the campaign trail. Really really tired of them.

          diver64 in reply to herm2416. | May 1, 2023 at 3:26 am

          Fuzzy is right about the Dept of Ed but the EPA, now that is one that can be abolished by Executive Order since it was created by it. With the damage it is now doing I think that would be a massive step in the right direction

      Danny in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | May 1, 2023 at 1:19 pm

      In addition to that I would like to add this from a very hostile source

      “DeSantis calls for $200 million more for teacher pay, and changes to union operations
      DeSantis said he will ask the Legislature to set aside $1 billion for teacher pay increases in the upcoming year.”

      You are right however to point out the pay a Florida teacher gets is when you think about cost of living much more spending power than what a teacher in NY NY gets but it is also worth pointing out that teacher pay is being increased anyway.

    PrincetonAl in reply to filiusdextris. | April 30, 2023 at 9:24 pm

    And you don’t want the teachers union to accumulate a lot of funds and power either or it becomes a huge issue.

    So taking this on before it becomes an issue is a lot better than waiting until the state is corrupted by it and the public schools are politicized endlessly and your best option is to move out.

    I had to do that once before – and I moved to Florida to escape it.

    CommoChief in reply to filiusdextris. | April 30, 2023 at 9:37 pm

    Bro. Teachers unions have lots of power in every State. They organize to vote as a bloc to both elect pro spend more $ on Ed politicians as well as in opposition to other policy items.

    As an example look at the timing of many local election cycles. Why in May in many places? Why not align them with the Nov election day calender? Answer – b/c less people vote in May so the power of the ED union voting bloc is magnified. That’s why the public sector unions routinely oppose attempts to modify the election calender and put many local positions on the Nov ballot.

      Exactly! We just had a School Board budget and election vote. 15% of registered voters turned out. It is impossible to beat the vested interests with turnout like that on an obscure date in April.

    Mercyneal in reply to filiusdextris. | May 1, 2023 at 3:01 am

    Dout you love DeSantis to begin with. I am always skeptical when someone begins with ” I love So and so… but…..”

When I worked for a Florida State Representative in 2016, I found that amongst Republican legislators the Teacher’s Union were disliked more than BLM and the Equality Florida (gay lobby). I see nothing has changed. Oh, the head of the Teacher’s Union is from my county so this is a major step in degrading the their power. More must be done.

Lot of wins in Florida.

This is what Republicans need to do when in power at the state level. Government union dues, voting integrity, parental rights in education, school choice, etc … winning issues that also maintain balance of power.

Mandating government union dues is just direct funding of radical democrat power grabbers – why do this? Why fund the opposition?

This is how it’s done. This is the way.

Granholm and the dems forced home care providers (even if a family member was taking care of their own) to HAVE to join a union and pay dues.
Eventually it was overturned but they still got their ill gotten gains.
All gov employees should never be allowed to unionize unless they’re willing to give up voting and participating in the campaign elections in any way, shape or form under penalty of mandatory 20 years in prison.
Of course even then democrat prosecutors would probably ignore the violations because they’re just crooks.

Meanwhile, here’s a ‘drive-by shooting’ story that appeared in the Boston Globe today.

He blew the whistle on Trump’s Truth Social. Now he works at Starbucks.

    henrybowman in reply to Ghostrider. | May 1, 2023 at 1:34 am

    Read most of the article, until if was apparent to me that if there was any beef patty there it would have shown up already. Also, it can’t be true or they would be impeaching him again.

      Dimsdale in reply to henrybowman. | May 1, 2023 at 1:07 pm

      There’s more beef in a McDonalds value burger than anything coming out of the Globe (the weak step child of the NYTimes).

    Hodge in reply to Ghostrider. | May 1, 2023 at 10:04 am

    Are you sure he’s not actually a plumber named Joe?

There is absolutely zero reason ANY red state should still have mandatory public sector unions in their state.

They are nothing other than a jobs and funding program for the Democrat party.

This is a good thing, but with public school teachers being something like 95% Democrat I doubt it puts a dent in union dues or power.

    PrincetonAl in reply to randian. | May 1, 2023 at 8:34 am

    It does.

    That’s why over 60% don’t pay them when given the choice.

    Even Democrats like to keep their paycheck to themselves.

    If 95% paid them, they wouldn’t need a legal mandate for it.

Suburban Farm Guy | May 1, 2023 at 8:38 am

IIRC the godfather of Unions in this country, one Franklin Delano Roosevelt, said public employees should not be allowed to unionize.

Makes sense to me. Who would these public sector unions be organizing against? The people? Yep. And Randi Weingarten is all the proof needed

This is an standard “I’m running for president so let’s excite the base for the primaries” move.

I suppose though it really doesn’t cost him anything as none of the union political contributions were heading to him anyway, and the states where the unions are strong are already lost to him no matter what he might say or do.

    Strelnikov in reply to Hodge. | May 1, 2023 at 10:50 am

    Sure, this corrupt system should have been left exactly who it has been. I mean, if we can’t make it perfect, we should do nothing, right?

When assessing teachers’ pay, it’s important to remember that this is essentially a part-time job where you work about 6 hours per day, take three months off each year, and get every possible paid holiday. Basically, you are working 8 months per year.

    CaptTee in reply to Strelnikov. | May 1, 2023 at 12:59 pm

    Strelnikov – You are obviously not the spouse of a teacher.

    You make the false assumption that the only time teachers work is when they are teaching a class. Preparation and grading assignments adds hours to the day. Keeping up with certification requirements means most summers are not holidays for new teachers.

      Dathurtz in reply to CaptTee. | May 1, 2023 at 1:07 pm

      I do think it is fair to say teachers work 9-10 months when considering pay.

        henrybowman in reply to Dathurtz. | May 1, 2023 at 4:56 pm

        I’ve never had a job that came with two months of vacation, even (especially) when I was self-employed.

          Dathurtz in reply to henrybowman. | May 1, 2023 at 7:05 pm

          Hence the 9-10 months timetable. I get a paycheck in the summer, but I am not earning money. That is money I have already earned, but haven’t been given. If I got fired at the end of may, my school owes me 3 months of pay.

          They used to give the option of a 9 month pay distribution, but that went away 10 or 11 years ago.

The next law the legislature should pass is one to automatically decertify any union that has less than 50% membership of the people that they claim to represent.

    PaulM in reply to CaptTee. | May 2, 2023 at 9:21 am

    One of the new laws already decertifies (most) public unions with less than 60% membership.

>Then again, I think all public unions should be banned >immediately and forever.


Steven Brizel | May 1, 2023 at 4:03 pm

This is a very important move against the tyranny of the teachers’ union

BierceAmbrose | May 1, 2023 at 5:15 pm

Emphasizing DeSantis sets him, and the policies up to get Alinsky-ed.

“Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.”

He’s signing a law. The legislature is part of this, and the voters before that. Before all of those are parents, acting as if the schools work for them, for the benefit of their kids.

“On June 27, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its landmark Janus v. AFSCME decision determining that all public employees are entitled to work without having to pay union dues or agency fees.”

Union power comes from union employees paying union dues. Teachers are public employees. Teachers who still choose to pay union dues are the problem. It’s just that simple.