News

RIGHT TO WORK FOUNDATION FUNDS MINNESOTA HOME HEALTH SERVICES EMPLOYEES CHALLENGE UNIONIZATION

JANUS 2.0? Home-based employees providing home-health are affiliated with SEIU in Minnesota. This week, the employees asked the U.S. Supreme Court asked to review the affiliation in the Bierman case. A group of Minnesota home-based care providers backed by the National Right to Work Foundation (which brought the landmark Janus v. AFSCME suit) petitioned the Supreme Court Thursday to take up a challenge to a Minnesota state law that permits home care workers for Medicaid recipients to unionize. The suit, Bierman v. Dayton, was brought in 2014 after Minnesota home care providers voted to be represented by the Service Employees International Union. The plaintiffs argue that even though the law doesn’t require union non-members to pay fair-share fees, the SEIU still bargains on behalf of everyone in the bargaining unit, including non-members, a circumstance the plaintiffs decry as “monopoly representation.”

How Will Illinois Manage its Unfunded Pension Liability?

Assisting employers through unfunded pension liabilities is a practice focus of Hesse Martone and as such, we closely monitor large pension fund issues. The Tribune editorial board discusses Illinois’s $133 billion pension shortfall, as we all anticipate the actions of the incoming Pritzker administration.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-pension-illinois-pritzker-budget-20181210-story.html #statetax

MISSOURI LEGISLATORS TO RECONSIDER RIGHT TO WORK

Following its defeat by ballot initiative last month, the Missouri Legislature is slated to reconsider the concept in a bill filed ahead of the 2019 session.

https://www.stltoday.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/right-to-work-floats-back-into-the-mix-after-missouri/article_365c4f4a-3303-5cde-a44e-b6324bf2ab59.html

HesseMartone Presenting at 112th AGC of Illinois Annual Convention

HesseMartone President and CEO, Andy Martone and Principal Attorney Matt Robinson will be presenting at Associated General Contractors of Illinois’s Annual Convention. Mr. Martone and Mr. Robinson will be presenting the Collective Bargaining Seminar and will be discussing updates and new strategies to AGCI’s members. The annual convention will be held on December 3 and 4th in Springfield, Illinois.

CONGRESSIONAL SUPERCOMMITTEE ON MULTI_EMPLOYER PENSION PLANS FAILS TO REACH BI-PARTISAN PLAN FORWARD

With its ranking members retiring at the end of the year, the work of the Congressional Pension Supercommittee will be continued by the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, to be chaired by Sen. Alexander. While several bi-partisan solutions were examined, none were adopted, including a business supported loan program. The multi-employer pensions include several large union pension plans, including the Central States Pension Fund. While it will not be possible to finalize a bipartisan agreement before Nov. 30, we believe a bipartisan solution is attainable, and we will continue working to reach that solution,” Committee Co-Chairs Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) said in a written statement to Politico. The committee considered various proposals over the past few months but was unable to reach a final consensus on any. Any work the supercommittee performs going forward will presumably have to be completed by Jan. 3 when Hatch retires.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn) said Thursday that in the next Congress the HELP Committee, which he chairs, will pick up where the supercommittee leaves off. “We will have no choice but to do that,” Alexander said during an executive session of the committee. Alexander has already discussed the task with Ranking Member Sen. Patty Murray, he said, and worked out jurisdictional kinks with the Finance Committee. More on the HELP committee’s plans here and on the extension here

OSHA RELEASES UPDATE TO CRANE OPERATOR TRAINING REQUIREMENTS:

OSHA releases new requirements for crane operator training, certification or licensing, and evaluation.  The new rules will also determine operator competency, a new requirement for employers. The final rule:

http://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2018-24481.pdf

 

HIRING VETERANS: A GUIDE FOR EMPLOYERS

HIRING VETERANS: A GUIDE FOR EMPLOYERS: HesseMartone is honored to work with so many clients who are veterans and those who hire veterans. Nearly 200,000 veterans transition into civilian life annually. Here are some guides to help employers understand the process. From the U.S. Department of Labor and Forbes.

https://www.dol.gov/veterans/Employer-Guide-to-Hire-Veterans-DEC-2017.pdf

https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2018/11/11/hiring-vets-isnt-just-the-right-thing-its-the-smart-thing/#2ac586043bcd

Seventh Circuit Reminds Employers How Important Accurate Employee Evaluations Can Be to Defending an Employment Decision

In Abrego v. Veterans Affairs, an employee claimed the termination of his employment was due to racial discrimination. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals used as evidence the employer’s comments in the annual evaluation to uphold the dismissal of the lawsuit. The employer had given the Abrego satisfactory annual review ratings but had noted, with specificity, the performance problems in the comment section of the reviews. The Court of Appeals upheld the employment termination and dismissed the claims of racial discrimination because the employer had provided evidence of documented performance problems, proving once again how key annual performance evaluations are to an employee’s work history and file.

http://media.ca7.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/rssExec.pl?Submit=Display&Path=Y2018/D10-30/C:17-3413:J:Flaum:aut:T:fnOp:N:2242508:S:0

 

ILLINOIS MUNICIPALITY CAN REDUCE ITS CONTRIBUTION TO RETIREE’S HEALTH INSURANCE

ILLINOIS MUNICIPALITY CAN REDUCE ITS CONTRIBUTION TO RETIREE’S HEALTH INSURANCE: In Lawson v. City of Genesco, the Illinois 3rd District Court of Appeals ruled that Genesco’s offer of health care coverage to retirees with more than 10 years of service was not covered by the Illinois Pension Code, and as such, could be reduced or eliminated by the municipality, an action that opens an avenue of relief to cash-strapped municipalities with large pension commitments.

http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/Opinions/AppellateCourt/2018/3rdDistrict/3170625.pdf

 

 

MISSOURI VOTERS TO CONSIDER GRADUALLY INCREASING MINIMUM WAGE ON NOVEMBER 6

Missouri’s employers may be faced with a $12.00 minimum wage by 2023 if the state’s minimum wage ballot passes. Endorsed by both the Kansas City Star and St. Louis Post Dispatch, the initiative would increase the minimum wage by 85 cents per year; which opponents claim would result in decreased hours for employees and harm businesses in the end.

https://www.kansascity.com/opinion/editorials/article220344550.html