Monthly Archives: January 2015

Here is your January 30 Friday Alert:

Congress to Create a Commission to “Fix” Social Security Reps. Tom Cole (R-OK) and John Delaney (D-MD) will introduce a bill this Congress to establish a commission that will propose changes to Social Security. These changes will likely include cuts … Continue reading

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Jochum: Iowa is losing our educational lead because other states invest more

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Senate President Pam Jochum January 29, 2015 statement When it comes to educational excellence, Iowa is losing our lead. For example, in 1996, according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, Iowa ranked 6th nationally in 4th grade math scores … Continue reading

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Gronstal: Iowans tell us our future depends on high-quality local schools

Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal January 29, 2015 The session took a bad turn this week. When it comes to supporting Iowa’s kids, Governor Branstad and House Republicans missed the mark. Republicans are offering Iowa families overcrowded classrooms, fewer teachers, … Continue reading

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AFSCME Legislative Update & ACTION ALERT: January 29, 2015

Take Action: Contact Your State Legislators Today During the early weeks of the session, two major issues have developed: the governor’s proposal to close Clarinda and Mt. Pleasant Mental Institutes and education funding. Both of these issues have attracted public … Continue reading

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Labor History

January 31 Some 12,000 pecan shellers in San Antonio, Texas—mostly Latino women—walk off their jobs at 400 factories in what was to become a three-month strike against wage cuts. Strike leader Emma Tenayuca was eventually hounded out of the state … Continue reading

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Area programs turn used license plates into money for local charities

The recycled plates have generated about $35,000 over the last decade Alison Gowans, The Gazette January 27, 2015 | 7:50 pm Iowa drivers go through a lot of license plates. Every month, Johnson County Treasurer Thomas Kriz’s office collects hundreds … Continue reading

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Steve King Introduces National Right to Work Act to End Forced Union Dues for Workers

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National Right to Work President applauds legislation that would prevent union officials from extracting union dues from workers as a condition of employment Washington, DC (January 29, 2015) –Today, Congressman Steve King (Republican-Iowa) along with 76 cosponsors introduced the National … Continue reading

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Working America Health Care for America

Recommended Health Care From a Name You Trust Working America, the community affiliate of the AFL-CIO, brings together millions of people to advocate for strong communities and an economy that works for everyone. As part of Working America, working people … Continue reading

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QC union president: “we will oppose every measure” on right-to-work zones

Video Link: http://wqad.com/2015/01/28/qc-union-president-we-will-oppose-every-measure-on-right-to-work-zones/ In his speech in Decatur, Illinois on Tuesday, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner said “right-to-work zones” are a priority for his first year in office. “I want local voter control of this issue so we can have economic … Continue reading

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Opening Comments by State Rep. Patti Ruff on 6% Supplemental State Aid

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Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Our amendment will set supplemental state aid at 6%. This amount wasn’t plucked out of thin air. This is the number that all public school organizations are asking for — school boards, teachers, administrators, urban and … Continue reading

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Governor, you are right: State support for Iowa students needs to catch up to our competitors

Posted: 26 Jan 2015 06:43 AM PST Open Letter to Governor Branstad from Senator Herman Quirmbach, Chair of the Senate Education Committee Dear Governor Branstad, Last Thursday, you told the Iowa State Board of Education, “We were complacent for too long, … Continue reading

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Representative Hunter – Bring Back the Middle Class

Thank you Mister Speaker. Ladies and Gentlemen of the House, I would like to welcome you to the 2015 Session of the 87th General Assembly. Over the past couple of days we have heard from the Speaker, the Majority Leader … Continue reading

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Let’s rebuild America

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By Sen. Bernie Sanders – 01/26/15 08:21 PM EST Our infrastructure is collapsing, and the American people know it. Every day, they drive on roads with unforgiving potholes, over bridges that are in disrepair and wait in traffic jams on … Continue reading

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Editorial: Invest more in K-12 education

Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad is just a year away from being the longest serving governor in U.S. history. Over the course of his six terms, overspending hasn’t been a problem. Fiscal conservativism has been the administration’s method of operation since … Continue reading

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Worker Wins Update: From the Casino to the Classroom, Workers Earn Critical Victories

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WASHINGTON, DC – Workers across the country have stood up in the past month to fight for better wages and working conditions.   Casino Workers Hit Jackpot With Major Organizing Wins: More than 12,000 workers have organized through UNITE HERE … Continue reading

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Labor History

January 27 New York City maids organize to improve working conditions – 1734 Mine explosion in Mount Pleasant, Pa., leaves more than 100 dead – 1891 First meeting of the Int’l Labor Organization (ILO) – 1920 Kansas miners strike against … Continue reading

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AFL-CIO, Allies Award Grants to Innovating Community Organizers

The LIFT Fund is the first-of-its-kind to support collaboration and innovation around new forms of worker organizing.   (Washington, DC, Jan. 29, 2015)— Today, the AFL-CIO announced the third round of LIFT Fund grants, which will be awarded to a … Continue reading

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Iowa Wage Theft Victims Speak Out

Jan. 27, 2015 Two key state senators are working on legislation to fight Iowa’s biggest crime spree: the $600 million in wages stolen from Iowa workers each year. Valentine Ruiz of Conesville tells a Statehouse news conference of his ongoing … Continue reading

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ALEC Watch: New Report Details Impact of Secretive Organization, Empowers Iowans to Take Action

Read the full report: http://progressiowa.org/alecwatch Des Moines, Iowa — Progress Iowa released a new research report today, entitled ALEC Watch. The report provides research about the background of the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, and details the organization’s influence … Continue reading

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Iowa JobWatch: Positive Note Ends Soft Year

45,000 Job Deficit Remains in Iowa’s Sluggish Recovery IOWA CITY, Iowa (Jan. 27, 2015) — Iowa nonfarm jobs rose in December as the unemployment rate fell from 4.3 percent to 4.1 percent. The Iowa Policy Project released the following statement … Continue reading

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