Archive for the ‘unions’ Category

Hoffa Central to Multiemployer Bailout

My theory at the time was that in exchange for Senator Joe Manchin’s support for the covid relief bill we got a bailout of multiemployer plans that included, according to Aharon Friedman in the Washington Examiner, the ‘baddest’ pension plan.

But according to a recent article it may have had less to do with Manchin and covid and more to do with trying to save James Hoffa Jr.

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Republican Rescue

I did borrow the book intending to read it through but when I got to page 2:

I don’t want a repeat of the aftermath of Herbert Hoover. Let’s be clear: Political parties have one purpose and one purpose only, and that’s to produce victories.

Moved right to skim mode and these are the only notable quotes that popped out.

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The New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) is a billion-dollar enterprise that runs a good portion of the state backed by the union dues of its members who happen to be in the worst funded public pension system in the country. Yet the pensions of NJEA employees are both generous and well-funded.

However, in checking the plan’s 5500 filing for the year ended August 31, 2020, something unusual popped up on the Schedule SB. It looks like a filing error but who knows?

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Rubbing Out Central States Debt

In exchange for Senator Joe Manchin’s support for the latest covid relief bill (and possibly future statehood for DC) we got a bailout of multiemployer plans that included, according to Aharon Friedman in the Washington Examiner, the ‘baddest’ pension plan where he goes into some history that can be summed up thusly:

Which apparently continue:

It is not clear why the plan made highly risky loans in recent years to Nicolas Maduro’s Venezuela and its government petroleum company. Perhaps such “investments” are supposed to be an example of the so-called environmental, social, and governance practices pushed by the Biden administration. Eight such loans, albeit relatively small, comprise all the plan’s loans in default or uncollectible on its latest filing.

But all crime is not created equal. For example, if I were to use my company’s retirement trust fund to pay employee salaries it would be a prohibited transaction that could result in some jail time. Not so for multiemployer plans.

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Union Propaganda Misfire

New Jersey Policy Perspective (NJPP) is a union-backed advocacy group commissioned to come up with what their sponsors (primarily the NJEA) believe will be reports that help their cause.

In 2014 they came out with a report (easily refuted) that claimed “New Jersey ranks close to last for overall pension benefit generosity, at 95th out of 100, in part because of cuts enacted in the pension reforms of 2011.”

In 2019 they came out with a brief (easily refuted) detailing a “wage gap” between New Jersey teachers and private-sector workers.

Recently they came out with a wish list that included this on public pensions and benefits:

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Local Control of NJ PERS?

S3522, which could mean unions will need to expand their corral of bought politicians to those who would control the local part of the New Jersey Public Employee Retirement System (PERS), was introduced yesterday in the legislature apparently to the surprise of a Senate committee that rejected it, according to Politico. If you are not a Politico subscriber here is all you can find out about it from them:

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According to njspotlight Montclair taxpayers have a problem with their public schools:

The Sunlight Policy Center sees a politician in Montclair as having a conflict of interest. I don’t.

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New Pension System for New Jersey

New Jersey Senate President Steve Sweeney sees it as priority number 2:

As to who is tasked with creating that new pension system:

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Build Back Stronger

That is what the International Brotherhood of Teamsters is calling their campaign to push for policy changes that organized labor has been seeking for years. It starts off with pensions:

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Employees Have a Pension Plan Twice as Good as the Teachers They Represent

That’s supposedly in California per this article but if you are wondering what the pesnion plan looks like for the people who are running half of New Jersey, here it is.

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