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Union Dues

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OPINION
January 29, 2014
Re "Who should pay union dues?," Editorial, Jan. 23 Yes, non-union employees should absolutely pay dues to unions they haven't joined but that got better wages and conditions for them. And bicyclists should be forced to pay gas taxes for something they didn't buy, since they use roads that were made for cars and paid for by these taxes. They should pay their fair share, since they didn't build that. And people who don't personally choose to own a gun but live where it's legal to have a firearm for home defense should be forced to donate to the National Rifle Assn.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 1, 2014 | By Cindy Chang and Robert Faturechi
A high-stakes power struggle at the union representing Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies has left members with two presidents, two boards of directors, two "official" websites and, for many, too much drama. Trouble at the Assn. for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs came to light last month when the board ousted Armando Macias, its newly elected president, citing his poor attendance. The board installed a new president, but Macias is refusing to recognize the ouster. Now the two sides are accusing each other of illegitimate power grabs and misusing union funds.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 22, 1992
Regarding the use of union dues ("Bush OKs Order on Political Use of Union Dues," April 14): It appears to me that union elected officials should have the same ground rules as government elected officials. When we pay our taxes, we have no say in how those taxes are spent. Our elected officials decide whether to send billions of dollars to Russia, to Israel, or use it for any other purpose. I have no say in the matter. Since union officials are elected to carry out the business of the union, they should be left to carry out that business.
NEWS
February 17, 2014 | By Jon Healey
The United Auto Workers' failure to organize workers at Volkswagen's plant in Chattanooga, Tenn., last week led its supporters to complain bitterly about their opponents' tactics, and particularly the rhetoric and threats by some state Republican leaders. The GOP scaremongering (Chattanooga will become Detroit! VW will shun Tennessee in favor of Mexico!) was certainly over the top, and the threat to withhold tax incentives from future VW factories was unseemly. Still, it's hard to blame the hyperbolic warnings and threats for the 712-626 vote against the UAW. For starters, the Republicans' arguments about future VW investments were largely irrelevant to the question facing each worker, which was simply, "Will unionizing make things better or worse for me ?"
OPINION
June 27, 2012
In states like California that allow "agency shops," unions have the right to charge even nonmembers dues to cover the costs of collective bargaining that benefits all workers. But the 1st Amendment prohibits them from forcing those nonunion employees to pay for political campaigns they don't support. The Supreme Court has reaffirmed that reasonable principle with a decision that requires an employee to agree to such payments in advance. By a 7-2 vote, the court ruled last week that the Service Employees International Union violated the 1st Amendment when it collected an extra $6.45 per month from nonmember state employees in 2005 to be used in a campaign against two California ballot measures opposed by labor.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 23, 1998
Re Laura Bekeart Dietz's April 10 letter: Union members currently have the right and opportunity to inform their unions that they do not want their dues money spent for political purposes. The Supreme Court's Beck decision provides us with that right. Prop. 226 adds nothing to that right. What Prop. 226 does do is silence the political voice for all working people. My union lobbies on Capitol Hill for safety improvements that benefit everyone who travels by air. Issues such as mandatory child restraints and cabin air quality both have tremendous impact on airline passengers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 25, 1998
Re "Union Foes Use State as Key Battleground," March 22: Unions already allow members to "opt out" of paying the portion of their dues that goes to political action, upon joining the union or any time after they have already joined. What Prop. 226 does is put into place a mass of bureaucratic red tape that makes union members sign a form printed by the government every year authorizing payment for political action, thus wasting union members' dues money collecting authorizations. Prop.
OPINION
January 29, 2014
Re "Who should pay union dues?," Editorial, Jan. 23 Yes, non-union employees should absolutely pay dues to unions they haven't joined but that got better wages and conditions for them. And bicyclists should be forced to pay gas taxes for something they didn't buy, since they use roads that were made for cars and paid for by these taxes. They should pay their fair share, since they didn't build that. And people who don't personally choose to own a gun but live where it's legal to have a firearm for home defense should be forced to donate to the National Rifle Assn.
NATIONAL
January 21, 2014 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON-- Supreme Court justices debated Tuesday whether teachers and other public employees can be required to pay dues to support a union even if some of them oppose it. Since 1977, the high court has upheld such mandatory union fees, but some justices suggested that they were open to changing course and striking down such the practice as a violation of the 1st Amendment. Justices Anthony M. Kennedy and Samuel A. Alito Jr. repeatedly questioned how the government can force unwilling workers to pay such dues, known as “fair-share” dues.
NATIONAL
January 20, 2014 | By David G. Savage
The Supreme Court will hear a 1st Amendment case this week involving Chicago-area in-home care providers that could end up dealing a major blow to public-sector labor unions. Illinois, California, Maryland, Connecticut and other states have long used Medicaid funds to pay salaries for in-home care workers to assist disabled adults who otherwise might have to be put in state institutions. The jobs were poorly paid and turnover was high. Over the last decade, more than 20,000 of these workers in Illinois voted to organize and won wage increases by joining the Service Employees International Union.
NATIONAL
January 6, 2014 | By W.J. Hennigan and Maria L. La Ganga
SEATTLE - After battling for months with Boeing Co.'s leadership, the company's largest union approved an eight-year contract that trades hard-fought pension benefits for the right to build the 777X airliner - a bitterly fought concession that underscores unions' uphill battle at the bargaining table. The contract approved late Friday was negotiated not with a bankrupt city or a struggling manufacturer, but with a company that delivered a record 648 planes last year and whose shares traded at all-time highs on the New York Stock Exchange.
OPINION
October 7, 2013 | By Peter Schrag
Monday is the 10th anniversary of the recall of Gov. Gray Davis and the election of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Was it the great watershed in California government that some predicted at the time? Was it a "people's revolution," something like Proposition 13, that would trigger a broader national uprising against politics as usual? Was it the great reengagement of an electorate that had been alienated by the mess our leaders had made of things? Or was the recall none of these things, just a system reset that hardly changed anything?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 21, 2013 | By Robert J. Lopez and Ben Welsh
Members of the union representing Los Angeles firefighters voted down a proposal to increase dues to finance aggressive political campaigns, union leaders said Tuesday. The leadership of United Firefighters of Los Angeles City wanted members to pay $38 per paycheck in union dues, up from $19, to increase the amount of money in the group's political action committee.  The organization represents about 3,200 members from the rank of firefighter to captain. VIDEO: Firefighters union urges dues hike for political campaigns Union President Frank Lima said Tuesday that the proposal was rejected in a close vote by more than 800 members who casted ballots.
OPINION
May 10, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
Massing the heavy legal artillery of 1st Amendment principles, a federal appeals court has ruled that the federal government can't order businesses to post signs informing employees that they have a right to join a union and to bargain for better wages. It's a troubling ruling. The case stems from a 2011 decision by the National Labor Relations Board that employers must "post notices to employees, in conspicuous places," informing them of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act, and include the information in electronic mailings.
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