A new report from researchers from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) finds that not only is rising inequality a drag on economic growth, but that policies designed to lessen inequality through a moderate level of redistribution do not slow growth. While the report is clear in stating it isn’t the official opinion or policy of the IMF, researchers Jonathan D. Ostry, Andrew Berg and Charalambos G. Tsangarides make a compelling case that austerity policies are bad for economic growth and that it isn’t just morally sound to reduce income inequality, it’s the economically wise choice, too. While countries have pursued policies focused heavily on deficit reduction and lower government spending, the new report suggests those legislative priorities may be the wrong approach to economic growth, joining a growing chorus of evidence from economic analysts that is pushing for a move away from austerity.
By Dave Cortese
Seconds count. That’s the undisputed truth when residents are confronted with an emergency and call 911. They need a firefighter, paramedic, police officer or sheriff as fast as possible. Period. It’s local government’s job to ensure that first responders have every tool necessary to get to emergencies quickly. Specifically, Santa Clara County has contracts with local fire departments requiring them to respond in eight minutes for 90 percent of emergency medical calls. When the standard is met, they receive a first responder fee from the county. Continue reading
AFT President Randi Weingarten
AFT and In the Public Interest launched a new website Thursday, Cashing in on Kids, to track charter schools and the private companies that often run them on a for-profit basis. The two groups argue that corporate-run charter schools are doing a bad job of serving students and that there is little accountability for these companies. In particular, the website will track K12 Inc., Academics, Imagine Schools, Charter Schools USA and White Hat Management.
AFT President Randi Weingarten says:
This is a simple exercise of following the money. How many times do people simply get up on a pedestal and say we care about kids, and then you realize that they care about profits, they care about tax deductions, they care about privatizing the public system?…If accountability and transparency should go all ways, let’s look at the accountability and transparency in terms of charter schools, not just in terms of public schools.
The United Auto Workers is asking the National Labor Relations Board to set aside the results of the certification election at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga, Tenn. assembly plant decided after a three-day vote Feb. 14.
Workers at the plant voted 712-626 against joining the UAW after a high-profile campaign that saw Tennessee politicians and private interest groups repeatedly threatening the future of the plant if workers voted to unionize.
The UAW’s objection, filed Feb. 21, says the threats were a “coordinated and widely-publicized coercive campaign [creating] a general atmosphere of fear or reprisal rendering a free election impossible.”
They are asking the NLRB to investigate the campaign and hold new elections. Continue reading
Judge Lucas has issued a final ruling in the challenges to San Jose’s pension measure, “Measure B.” This follows her “tentative decision” which was issued last December and is the result of objections and requests for modification to the tentative decision. The final decision almost completely adopts the tentative decision and preserves City of San Jose employees’ right to receive the pension promised to them when they began working for the City under the terms in place when they began working. The ruling also addresses changes to disability retirement, retiree health and the SRBR benefit.
Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese is leading in a new poll of San Jose residents most likely to vote in June in the San Jose Mayor’s race.
In the upcoming primary election, it will take only about 23% of the vote to advance to the general election, and Cortese already has a commanding overall lead with 19%. Equally important, the poll shows him leading with all but one major demographic group. Cortese leads with older voters, younger voters, Democrats, Republicans, Hispanics, men and women. Madison Nguyen trails with 15% and Sam Liccardo, who just admitted committing fundraising violations, has support from just 10% of voters. Nguyen has a narrow lead over Cortese with Asians, but voters do not know Liccardo, and he has no base of support. Both Nguyen and Liccardo have a steep uphill battle. For more details on this poll see The Left Hook
The South Bay Labor Council is proud to welcome National AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka to San Jose this April, as the keynote speaker for the COPE 2014 Awards Dinner.
” As we head into what will surely be a hard-fought campaign season to elect San Jose City Council members and a new Mayor, as well as a host of other races, it’s a great honor to have the leader of the American Labor Movement recognize our hard work and cheer us on,” said Ben Field, Executive Officer of the South Bay Labor Council.
President Trumka will address hundreds of guests at the annual campaign fundraiser on Saturday, April 5 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. Sponsorships and tickets are available HERE. The deadline for sponsorships is March 21st. Questions? Contact Carmelita Gutierrez or call 408-606-2060. you can also register HERE.