Idaho Teachers Take a Beating In the State Legislature
Matt | On 09, Mar 2011
Idaho joined a growing list of states that are determined to balance their tight budgets on the backs of underpaid and under-appreciated teachers.
The GOP-controlled House passed a measure by a vote of 48-22 to limit the collective bargaining power of teachers in the Gem State. Under the legislation, teachers would only be able bargain for pay and benefits, but not class size and other items.
The state Senate, also Republican-controlled, already passed the bill in February. The next step is for it to go to Gov. Butch Otter’s desk for signature into law.
All of this action is, of course, a result of states feeling the pressure of having to balance their budgets by law. The sad thing is that they see TEACHERS of all people as the scapegoats to fix these problems. Conservatives complain that public unions cost taxpayers so much money. But, these unions are created (in most cases) to protect some pretty UNDERPAID people. I have yet to see a teacher raking in a $500,000 salary in a public classroom.
Cost-cutting measures are acceptable in tough times. But, has it occurred to lawmakers that states need to generate REVENUE in order to help their budgets? Where are the tax increases for the rich? Where are additional taxes and fees on income and services across the economy?
Protecting corporations and the rich is mind-blowing to me in a budget crisis. Something is not adding up here.