Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Harvest is Plenty Laborers are Few

It was not a bad day as days go in Legislative Hall.

DSEA entered testimony on HB186 a bill that codifies the 403(b) school employee retirement accounts and establishes a board to administer the plans. DSEA is in favor of the bill and has asked for an amendment that specifically allows DSEA to designate one of the board members.
DSEA had a productive meeting today with Senator Peterson about SB95, the bill proposing consolidation of school districts. The bill is not expected to move this year, but is being used as a discussion starter. The sponsor wants to work with DSEA if/when the legislation becomes viable.
DSEA activated the cyber lobbyist program today encouraging members to ask legislators if they have signed on to the pledge against pay cuts. We also asked members to make a special effort to come to Dover on June 11th. A rally will be held on legislative mall on that day with people beginning to gather at 4:00PM, but speeches will not start until 6:00PM.

In spite of great pressure from the Markell administration, several more legislators signed on to the pledge today.

Our radio advertisements will begin in a few days.

Legislators please consider the following:
We have mounted a huge campaign against the unreasonable salary cut involving lobbying by thousands of members, new alliances, comprehensive communications efforts including polling, earned and paid media, research, mobilization, solidarity actions and more.
Now, if we lose this fight and you cut our salaries, by 8%, 5%, or what purpose and in what direction will our membership demand that we turn this machine? That's not a threat. It is political reality. Our membership will demand accountability as these cuts hit home causing real suffering to their families.

Representative John Kowalko has several revenue bills currently under draft. Once again, he is showing leadership on this critical issue. Representative Kowalko was the first to raise the issue using an erudite powerpoint presentation prepared with the help of DSEA member Philip Kaplan. The representative waited for colleagues to take up the challenge and file legislation based on the revenue ideas. When this did not happen, Kowalko proceded with legislation on his own.

The harvest is plenty. The laborers are few.


  1. Tim - I know people are interested, but they are overwhelmed a bit. The end of school is in sight and in BSD 43% of the staff are relocating, so not only are they grading, but they are packing and purging material. Let them breath and they'll come back hard for the "labor".

  2. Point well taken Mr. B

    In the case of the 'few Laborers' I was actually referring to the way Rep Kowalko is so far the only legislator with the courage to come forward with revenue legislation.