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Posted on Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 5:59 a.m.

Local higher education unions gross $6.9M a year but brace for lower revenues after right-to-work passage

By Kellie Woodhouse


Protestors rally against right-to-work legislation prior to its passage in mid-December.

Unionized workers of three public higher education institutions based in Washtenaw County pay at least $6.9 million a year in union dues, according to payroll figures.

Those dues help buy political influence in Lansing and Washington, D.C., as well as fund bargaining and pay administrative staff and office rent, among many other things.

Once Michigan begins to integrate controversial right-to-work legislation in late March, passed by the Republican-controlled state legislature in December, workers will have the freedom to choose whether to pay union dues in workplaces that are currently closed shops.


University of Michigan's central campus

The legislation won't affect current union contracts. Yet once existing contracts expire, employees will be free to decide whether to pay dues, but they still will be covered by union-negotiated contracts either way.

Trade organizations fear that workers' new ability to opt out of paying dues will significantly curtail union resources.

At the University of Michigan employees paid, at minimum, a hefty $5.36 million in dues last fiscal year.

There are roughly 11,800 employees who had their union fees taken out of their university paychecks from July 1, 2011, to June 30, 2012, according to a university spokesperson. Fees amount to an average of roughly $450 per employee per year.

Those employees belong to 9 unions, representing a range of U-M employees from nurses to theatrical stage employees to medical residents to maintenance staff. Other working groups, such as tenured faculty and administrators, are not unionized.

"We have to rethink everything. Within this coming year, we're going to have a huge budget impact, so we're trying to re-evaluate how we're going to allocate our resources," said Bonnie Halloran, president of U-M's lecturers union, the Lecturers' Employee Organization, for the past 10 years. LEO's labor agreement with U-M expires in mid-April and it will likely be the first U-M trade organization to feel the full impact of right-to-work legislation.

"We're projecting that we could potentially lose half our revenues. And that's very optimistic," continued Halloran, who says it will likely take the union a full two years before it understands the full impact of right-to-work.

LEO has roughly 1,500 members between U-M's three Michigan campuses. It collects 1.6 percent of lecturers' gross pay each year, for a total of $790,000 last year, according to Halloran.

Robert Boonin, an Ann Arbor-based labor law attorney with the Butzel Long law firm, said unions representing teachers at public colleges and universities are particularly vulnerable to a drop in membership.

"University employees in general are pretty spread out, so the ability for a union to assert a lot of peer pressure is much less," said Boonin, who represents employers. "It's very possible that people would decide that continuing to be in a union is not worth the price."

Boonin added that medical residents and graduate student instructors, each with their own union, are also vulnerable.

"They're only going to be around for the short run, once they get the degree they'll be gone," he said. "So they may not, as a whole, be as interested in supporting a union."

Halloran said LEO is already considering moving out of its offices at 330 E. Liberty Street, which it shares with another U-M union, for cheaper space elsewhere. The union is also in the midst of reworking its 2013 budget.

Bargaining, too, has become more difficult.

"We’re basically overwhelmed with trying to sort this all out. It's breathtaking," Halloran said. "We're bargaining in a situation that we don't fully understand. The legalities of it. What we can and can't do. The effect it has on our ability to negotiate. What is that we're negotiating for?"

According to Boonin, employees will now be expecting greater returns on unions that are more cash-strapped then ever. If an employee feels unsatisfied with a union's performance, he or she can easily opt out of paying fees. The new dynamic puts unprecedented pressure on unions.

"They have more people to please," he said.

Though he doesn't have first-hand knowledge of LEO's case, Boonin said it might be possible for LEO to ask the university to have a new agreement supersede its current contract and begin prior to the late March right-to-work enactment, instead of beginning in mid-April when LEO's current contract expires. That could stay immediate revenue drops, but also require concessions.

Katie Oppenheim, chair of the roughly 4,500-member University of Michigan Professional Nurse Council, said her union too is still brainstorming how to react to the right-to-work legislation after its sudden passage.

"We're still crafting the message," she said. "It's a very fluid thing because this all happened very quickly."

The nurses' current contract expires July 2014.

At Eastern Michigan University employees paid at least $1.29 million in union dues in 2012, according to payroll figures from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31. During that time, 1,980 employees had their fees taken out of their paychecks.

"People are concerned that this will undermine their ability to have a say in their teaching conditions," EMU Federation of Teachers staff organizer Robert Vodicka said of right-to-work. EMUFT is the Ypsilanti school's full- and part-time lecturers union. Members of EMUFT currently pay 1.8 percent of their gross teaching pay in dues, according to Vodicka.

At Washtenaw Community College, employees paid at least $266,720 in union dues during fiscal 2011-12, according to Annessa Carlisle, executive director of public relations and marketing at the college.

Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for Reach her at or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.



Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 6:23 p.m.

That's all the "right to work" scam was all about. The right wingers wanted to de-fund the Democratic party. Like Castro, Hitler, and Hugo Chavez, the Michigan Republicans think one political party is enough. They're evil people and they WILL be judged for their actions.

Roger Kuhlman

Tue, Jan 8, 2013 : 4:43 p.m.

So why should People be forced to contribute to Union political activities. It seems Unions are advocating the practices of Hugo Chavez here by forcing them to do something they may not want to do. Right-to-Work legislation does not abolish collective bargaining it just gives people the freedom to choose. I am for freedom, what about you?

Roger Kuhlman

Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 2:38 p.m.

Wrong! The new Right-to-Work bill is not "controversial." How is giving People a choice whether they have to join a Union and pay their fees controversial? Forcing People to do things is not a traditional Democratic American ideal.

Kellie Woodhouse

Thu, Jan 10, 2013 : 4:45 p.m.

We spoke about this over email, but regardless of your political views it is clear that the R2W is pretty controversial. When it was in the legislature thousands upon thousands of people descended on Lansing to protest the measure. Even this week, after the law has already been passed for a month, there were still protesters rallying against it in Lansing. Whether you like R2W or not, there are definitely mixed feelings about it in the political sphere.


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 5:10 a.m.

I wish a person who is WRITING the story regarding right to work would quit spewing thsi lie "workers will have the freedom to choose whether to pay union dues in workplaces that are currently closed shops." There are no such thing as closed shops. They were outlawed by Taft Hartley in the 1940's (I will guess that is before her birth). The law now allows non-union members to not pay for the negotiated rates that the UNION negotiates. Taft Hartley REQUIRES the union to represent non-union workers, even if they do not pay for the service. The right wing talking points are old. Please do a modicum of research on the topic


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 11:04 p.m.

Johnnya2, The Taft Hartley act does not require the union to represent non-union workers. The Taft hartley act gives the unions a CHOICE whether to represent members only or exclusive representation (all workers). However, if the unions choose to represent all employees (exclusive) then the Taft Hartley act requires those employees who are not part of the union to pay a fee. In other words, these non union employees have no choice. The Supreme Court in 1962 upheld the union's right to choose between member's only representation or exclusive representation (all employees). The Federal Labors Relations Authority ( even said so: "The labor relations statute sets out a specific procedure for employees to petition to be represented by a labor union and to determine which employees will be included in a "bargaining unit" that a union represents."

Seasoned Cit

Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 4:23 a.m.

Has anyone asked for an accounting of how the LEO spends the $790,000 they receive in dues each year? Do they have their own private box at the Big House or seats on the court-side by the Governor at basketball ? Kellie, how about a series of how these unions spend the money to go along with stories such as above where the Union officers are worried about loosing what was close to "automatic income" ?

Are you serious?

Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 3:45 a.m.

When this all shakes out over the next few years I wonder how much benefits will decrease now that employers can do whatever they want. Given many employers focus on the short term profits you can bet that many of them will start eliminating benefits that current employess (non union management as will) enjoy. Michissippi here we go...


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 1:10 a.m.

About 25 years ago the company I worked for was participating in a trade show in Detroit. When we arrived at the convention center, we were greeted with workers offering help with unloading our materials and carrying them into the building. We politely declined, as we were managing just fine. Several weeks later, we received a bill from the union. I called to tell them they had made an error and was told that regardless of whether or not you used the workers, each exhibitor was required to pay the union for labor. Right then I decided a union would never be for me.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 10:40 p.m.

The number one thing that will be dropping here and the accross the country is the standard of living of the middle class and poor. Wages haven't really been increasing since the the late 70s. As a whole the middle class and poor have seen their wage stagnate when adjusted for inflation. While the rich has seen their incomes jump by over 300% over the same time period.


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 10:58 p.m.

Wages haven't been increasing since the late 70's? Hmmmm.....the unions sure haven't been doing their job then!

Stephen Landes

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 10:18 p.m.

Unions are not required to bargain for everyone -- they choose to include that provision in their contracts so they can force all employees to pay union dues. In their next contract a union has the perfectly legal right to represent only dues-paying members. If they chose this route then employees would see whether or not union membership would be beneficial: if the employer treats them less well than they treat unionized workers these workers could opt for union membership. I'll bet that what the unions are afraid of is that unrepresented workers would be treated as well or better than unionized workers, so unions wold lose members.


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 10:57 p.m.

Stephen, Thank you! That is what I have been saying all along. Someone debating against me sent me this link to try and prove me wrong. Well guess what the Federal Labor Relations Authority said: ""The labor relations statute sets out a specific procedure for employees to petition to be represented by a labor union and to determine which employees will be included in a "bargaining unit" that a union represents." In 1962, the Supreme Court upheld the unions right to choose between members only bargaining or exclusive bargaining (all employees) when it came to write the contract with the employer.


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 12:06 a.m.

This isn't true. Unions are required by law to bargain for all employees. A contract provision that allowed the union to bargain for dues-paying employees but not for non-dues-paying employees would be illegal. There is a good argument that this is a bad idea - but it's the law, like it or not.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:55 p.m.

"We're projecting that we could potentially lose half our revenues. And that's very optimistic," So much for "solidarity".

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:30 p.m.

And another in this blog's series of one-sided stories. I thought the quote about having more people to please was telling, though. Unions in Michigan have never before had to consider their entire membership. It's always been about enriching the 1%.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 6:18 p.m.

Just another step to finally ridding us of useless unions.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:32 p.m.

And more people who will eventually qualify for food stamps due to low wages. We are better off with the unions, unless you want to cut food stamps and let kids go hungry.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:15 p.m.

Yet another sophisticated comment. Bravo for being so informed!


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:58 p.m.

How does this work? Let's say 90% of a local decide to save approx $500 per year and opt out but don't vote to decertify because they get the benefit of the contract. Does this mean that the remaining 10% bargain for the other 90%?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:51 p.m.

Not likely, although if only a few employees "opt Out" the Administrators/Managers will undoubtedly continue to provide these no-longer represented employees with the same wages and benefits since it makes the job of the Administrator/Manager much easier. If a large percentage of employees Opt Out (and only time will provide a range for what defines a large percentage) then these employees will most likely be provided with reduced benefits, possibly in exchange for a nickel or dime per hour more pay. One dime per hour more pay is equivalent to approximately $125/year in increased pay during a full academic year (using estimates of 180 days/year and 7 hrs/day). What the Union Bashers fail to realize is that the prevalence of labor unions in Michigan has increased the pay and benefits for all workers, even those not in a Labor Union. Blue collar workers favoring this legislation are "cutting off their nose to spite their face", to quote an old saying of my mother. Managers who favor this legislation are only revealing their own weaknesses and inabilities to properly manage their businesses. Unionized workers only receive what Management has agreed to provide to them. Having managed both Unionized and non-Union work forces , I can attest that it is easier to manage a unionized workforce. The Contract explicitly defines both the crimes and the punishments.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:45 p.m.

I'm stunned by all the Republicans here advocating that workers should be able to reap all the benefits without paying into the system. Sounds something like socialism, which I thought the Repubs abhor.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 10:33 p.m.

Macabre Sunset said "Unions will protect their friends who lie, cheat and steal on the job." Sounds delusional to me.

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:37 p.m.

I don't know what the Republicans are advocating, but those who are against unions see a political entity that has nothing to do with benefiting employees. All unions care about is the 1% with the most seniority, and being able to buy legislators. Unions will happily send the bottom 50% into unemployment, as fewer and fewer jobs exist in a union environment. Unions will happily see young, enthusiastic employees thrown out into the streets when job cuts are necessary, protecting their tired friends with seniority. Unions will protect their friends who lie, cheat and steal on the job. The reason I support this legislation is because unions should have to work for the greater good if they're going to receive payment. The time has come to end the practice of forcing people to pay for something that's actually hurting them. As for Walton, at least he employs people. Never mind the silly 1%er misunderstanding about how savings and budgets work.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:29 p.m.

JBK, a lot of the people collecting food stamps and the like are working poor, notice the operative phrase, working. Is it someones fault that they work for Walmart and make $10 an hour? Just a quick note, the Walton family has more money than the lower 40% of all the people in this country. I do not begrudge them their money, but at some point, how much is enough? By the way, all taxpayers subsidize the Walton family when we give a large percentage of their employees food stamps.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:41 p.m.

JBK, that is the irony I am pointing out. Repubs are for it when it comes to unions but against it in general.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:51 p.m.

sh1 - Too funny. And I quote "should be able to reap all the benefits without paying into the system." So perhaps YOU can explain to me all of the people collecting food stamps, general assistance, day care benefits, low cost housing, etc... who PAY nothing into the system YET reap all of the benefits. How is that so?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:22 p.m.

It would be very interesting to have an "investigative reporter" analyze exactly how those union dues are spent. My wife is forced to pay union dues and sees almost no benefit, especially when it comes to legitimate work related issues. My impression is that those dues primarily go to over-paid union officials and campaign funding for the Democratic party. If "forced to join the union" members (which is just about everyone) choose to opt out of paying union dues it's because they see no value in that union.

Kellie Woodhouse

Thu, Jan 10, 2013 : 4:42 p.m.

Kellie's political views don't make a difference on what she pursues when reporting, FYI.

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:59 p.m.

It would be interesting. But Kellie has her contacts and her political views, and neither would not permit such an action.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:19 p.m.

RTW will impact individual unions only as their contracts expire. Expect repeal of RTW to be number one on the priority list with a New Democratic governor and a new Democratic legislature in 2015.

Basic Bob

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:30 p.m.

@arborarmy, I voted for Obama twice, so try to take this the right way. The statewide popular vote has no bearing on the makeup of the legislature. Neither does the governor have any impact on which laws are passed, unless he/she chooses to shut down the state and veto everything coming from the legislature. As long as the majority of districts across the state are content to elect Republicans by slight margins, the legislature will remain solidly Republican. Perhaps we will see a Democrat elected to the governor's office next term, but I don't pretend that the number of Democratic representatives and senators will change dramatically. I would love to see the Democrats send a viable candidate to the general election who could sway the independent voters in this state over to their side. Virg Bernero was not the guy, and IMO neither is Gretchen Whitmer. Democrats contribute to the election and re-election of guys like Snyder when they nominate unelectable candidates. There is little chance that Democratic influence peddlers will attempt to appeal to swing voters, and they seal their own fate.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:17 p.m.

Obama won 55% of the vote in the state. There's the start. The radical legislation he signed into law in the lame duck will add to that total. He has revealed himself to be a bought-and-paid-for radical rather than the thoughtful moderate he claimed to be. He is doomed.

Basic Bob

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:58 p.m.

Because suddenly people in West Michigan will vote Democratic? If everyone in Washtenaw County re-elects Rebekah Warren, she still gets only one vote.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:16 p.m.

This is good....the rank and file now have the means to hold their union leadership accountable with results.


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 10:50 p.m.

Arborarmy, When it comes to unions, the term "freeloaders" is a myth. As you already know, the Taft-Hartley Act gives the unions a choice when they organize a company and write a contract. They have a choice of representing union members only or a choice of exclusive representation (all employees). The website that you provided me even said it: """The labor relations statute sets out a specific procedure for employees to petition to be represented by a labor union and to determine which employees will be included in a "bargaining unit" that a union represents." Also, the 1962 unanimous decision by the Supreme Court even said the unions have a choice once they organize a company as to who they want to represent, members only representation or exclusive representation (all employees).


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:14 p.m.

You did'nt build that..........your union did..............


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:29 p.m.

If I am dissatisfied with the quality my doctor, lawyer, or dentist's work. I have the choice to send a message and pay for those services elsewhere.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:24 p.m.

I have no problem paying for quality; whether it be a service or a product.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:15 p.m.

I take it, then, the answer is you don't pay for things that are free. Tell me, does your lawyer, your doctor, your dentist offer their service and you hav the choice of paying for them or not?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:54 p.m.

Arborarmy - If the union membership feels that their leadership is freeloading, then they can send a message.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:22 p.m.

Freeloaders will still have full protections and benefits of the union contract, to include union representation in any disciplinary action. Tell me, Gorc, how many things do you pay full freight for for that you could get for free?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:17 p.m.

Wow...did I just use the words union and accountable in the same sentence?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:15 p.m.

If they didn't have to pay Union Dues which Funds Democrat Candidates, these people could get a pay raise without costing us anything! But Those "GREEDY UNION BOSSES" taking money away from Children and Teachers!

Nicholas Urfe

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:11 p.m.

This is all about turning michigan into the low wage worker-bee state. Elections are about money and lobbying, and this will weaken employment rights and laws for everyone - even those who have never joined a union. Though Michigan's laws are already heavily biased toward corporations.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 8:39 p.m.

"Shafted" workers won't be able to become paying dues members of unions and that limits the effectiveness of unions, as they try to counter lobbying by organizations with much more money. Some of those with "deep pockets" are those who try to weaken unions so that even more millions of dollars can go to the corporate and political bosses. It is those real bosses of the rest of us who label union representatives as bosses.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:12 p.m.

Unions will still be able to negotiate, if workers start to get shafted, which nothing in this law says they will, they will flock to the unions and gladly pay the dues.

Basic Bob

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:56 p.m.

Unions are all about worker bees.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 1:39 p.m.

Conservatives, please make up your minds. Are labor unions: (a) Organizations that result in inflated salaries and benefits for their members (b) Organizations that waste the dues of their members It can't be both.

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:44 p.m.

A) In the public sector, unions are negotiating against themselves. FDR was fairly clear about why even he, as a fierce supporter of entitlements, thought public sector unions were a terrible idea. In the private sector, in good times, they have done well for their constituents. However, in bad times, by not giving back, they have priced the jobs of many out of the market. B) Unions serve a small percentage of their base. They protect those with seniority over those who are young and competent. They protect those who behave badly, harming the reputation of everyone. And they spend a high percentage of their money supporting political candidates who may or may not have the individual's best interests in mind.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:11 p.m.

It can't? and why not?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:59 p.m.

Northside- I'm a fierce supporter of private unions. I do not, in any way, support public sector unions - and that includes unions that operate within the public sector (such as a teacher's union).


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:11 p.m.

Navy the conservative view of unions isn't just contradictory, it is simplistic. I'm very pro-union but think some unions are bad. There are some - not most, but some - that don't effectively advocate for their members. Unions are therefore like any other organization, in that their quality can vary and vary quite dramatically. Most people that I know who are also pro-union recognize this and don't have an idealized view of labor. People who are anti-union, especially political conservatives, tend to portray unions in a monolithic manner.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:15 p.m.

I don't think any intelligent conservative would make the argument that union dues are "wasted." Dues are clearly being used to engage in rent-seeking behavior on behalf of the members a given union is representing - to that end, dues are being used in a highly useful and efficient manner.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 1:23 p.m.

All the bemoaning about " fat cats " by the left ..check out the salaries ( above and below the table ) of the union leaders...thanks Rick for putting an end to legalized extortion...


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 10:42 p.m.

Check out the income gains by the rich over the last 30 years!

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 9:45 p.m.

Ahh, Nicholas, you have just undermined half the posts you've made regarding economics. That's a big oops for you.

Unusual Suspect

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 8:43 p.m.

What kind if "top talent" did the $100,000 salary draw for the U of M's Social Media director?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:15 p.m.

"It takes cash to retain and pay top leadership talent in any venture" I will remember this quote for the next UM salary story posts.

Nicholas Urfe

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:06 p.m.

It takes cash to retain and pay top leadership talent in any venture.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 1:13 p.m.

If they lose revenue because people are offered a choice then they are not offering a good product. I look forward to the day when collective bargaining truly means that rather than selling your soul to the UAW.


Mon, Jan 7, 2013 : 10:41 p.m.

The Taft Hartley Act gives the unions a choice of who they want to represent once they organize a company and write up the contract. If they choose to represent members only (union members) then there is no "free ride" to worry about. If they choose exclusive representation (all employees) then those that are not members of the union are subject to the collective bargaining and pay a fee for such. Over the years, unions have chosen the exclusive representation route because it brings in more money for them. In 1962, the Supreme Court in a unanimous decision stated that unions have the right to choose between members only bargaining or all employees (exclusive) bargaining. From the FLRA: ""The labor relations statute sets out a specific procedure for employees to petition to be represented by a labor union and to determine which employees will be included in a "bargaining unit" that a union represents."


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 7:42 p.m.

Clueless -- The United AutoWorkers don't negotiate on behalf of State of Michigan Teaching Staff. Either the Michigan Educational Association or the American Federation of Teachers union does. Wow, its' amazing how uninformed or public at large, is.

Basic Bob

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:54 p.m.

Don't fret, northside. Everyone believes like you and will continue to pay their union dues. So it's really not a problem at all. I'm sure people that decline to join the union will be under intense pressure from the union mob.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 2:30 p.m.

So you favor someone getting all the benefits on someone else's dime?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 1:43 p.m.

Just another conservative demonstrating a total lack of understanding of the law they so strongly support. For the millionth time, under "right to work" you still get the benefits of the union without having to pay dues.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 12:35 p.m.

Perhaps the rationalization of staff salaries will be among the first steps in reining in the runaway cost of higher education, at least in the State of Michigan.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 8:32 p.m.

There's a difference between how that would value the pay of employees in a for profit business and employees in public service jobs in education, police, firefighters, etc.. The value of learning to read and do math emerges over decades. Valuable public sector jobs increase the value of society over long periods of time, not as profits in a quarterly earnings statement.

Basic Bob

Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:50 p.m.

@northside, What qualified people are willing to work for is the key factor. Of course the union ensures that the only qualified people are tenured members and their relatives. It has absolutely nothing to do with how much they would be paid as a nurse, lawyer, police officer, or garbage collector unless they are also qualified and willing to do those jobs.


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:01 p.m.

@ JBK: What does "the market" mean to you and how does it determine a fair salary?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 4:01 p.m.

We can reign in the salaries and watch the quality teachers head out of state. And, did they not just flip the situation by allowing people who are not in the union to take advantage of union negotiated contracts?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 3:39 p.m.

Northside - Would "not" the market determine a fair salary? that is how it works in the Private Sector. Computer programmers, Engineers, Architects, etc... are ALL paid on what the Market will pay. Pretty simple!


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 1:41 p.m.

scottie that's the question that anti-labor people never answer. What is a fair salary for a prof at EMU? A 3rd grade teacher? An adjunct at a community college?


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 1:17 p.m.

Those doctors and lawyers who are solely paid by tax dollars SHOULD be looked at. And are....


Sun, Jan 6, 2013 : 12:40 p.m.

How much should teachers make? How much should Doctors and lawyers too while we're at it...