Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Support Endorsement of S.B. 41

At the January 13, 2011 DCRCC meeting I am proposing to adopt a Resolution endorsing S.B. 41.

That resolution is to be sent to Kelly Kite, James Settelmeyer, Governor Sandoval, the Douglas County School Boards, all the Nevada central committees and the Assembly and Senate minority leaders. It calls for our Board of Commissioners to endorse S.B. 41 and instruct our county lobbyist to lobby for its passage and signature.

S.B. 41 proposed by Governor Gibbons removes the provision establishing mandatory collective bargaining for local governments and school boards.

Right now the Douglas County budget is over 80% employee costs with no apparent ability to control same.

NRS 278 which is proposed to be amended provides that if the secret collective bargaining fails, it goes to mediation. If that fails it then goes to binding arbitration. That all means that a single person – the arbitrator – decides what the provisions of the employees’ contract will be without input or decision making by the elected representatives or the citizens who are excluded from the sessions – those who are required to pay the bill.

Basically, it removes the ability to manage budgets from those elected to represent the best interests of the citizens.

Such collective bargaining is held behind closed doors without a chance for public participation and/or input. It flies in the face of open and transparent government.

The adopted Douglas County Platform calls for the elimination of County employee unions and this is a major portion of that thinking.

When I asked County Manager Michael Brown to place the consideration of the endorsement of S.B. 41 on the Commission agenda, his response was: "I will first wait to see what the new Governor does regarding this bill draft." (It is no longer a draft, but S.B. 41.) I reminded him that we do not work for the Governor, he works for us and the citizens have a duty to tell him their wants.

I urge you to approve the resolution I have submitted so that our government is truly transparent and our elected officials can take control of their budget.

This article was submitted by Stuart Posselt of the Douglas County Republican Central Committee.

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