Governor Bruce Rauner of Illinois has requested a judge to give him a free hand so that he can sack a few public union employees. He alleged that Governor Pat Quinn, his predecessor, hired them in an illegal manner. The present governor said that union protection cannot be applied to employees who were hired through political means in the first place. The concerned employees work within Illinois Department of Transportation.
Getting rid of the deadwood
Catherine Kelly, the spokeswoman for Rauner, said that the governor is trying to get rid of such illegal hires from the state government's payroll. She added that it is important for workers to get hired on what they know, and not who they know. Rauner said that the issue of cronyism when it comes to hiring workers should come to an end. He said that only talented people must be hired. These people will offer better value to the taxpayers.
Dan DiSalvo, a labor expert and senior fellow of Manhattan Institute, said that these workers are practically guaranteed to keep their jobs in-case the judge provides them union protection.
The actions of the governor are due to the conclusion reached by an investigator that Quinn, along with a number of other Democrats, placed their family and friends in state jobs which have an excellent pay structure. Most candidates are not even qualified for such jobs. The investigator was appointed by the court. Michael Madigan, the House Speaker, was named in this report. He declined to comment on the matter.
Hard to fire
DiSalvo said that it is hard to sack employees. There is a number of steps to go through. It is the onus of the employer to prove that they are not properly doing their jobs. He warned that it is a time consuming process which must be legally documented. There is a fair chance that those political appointees will end up having permanent jobs.
The union, in such cases, is placed in a problematic position. The body can consider their removal as they were hired by unfair means or can be treated as normal workers and have all protections given under the collective bargaining agreement.
Questions were also fired towards Rauner concerning his hiring of a few ex-employees of the present Deputy Governor Leslie Geissler Munger. These employees got hired as political and non-union employees who can be removed if a new administration comes to power.