After a couple of month’s worth of free time spent researching, editing, and rewriting, I am pleased to announce the new Labor Contracts page on this blog.
The page is designed to be one-stop-shopping for residents seeking to educate themselves on Sterling Heights labor issues. You can now view the original Labor Contracts currently in effect, as well as the subsequent Memorandums of Understanding. All of the documents are in one place, neatly organized by bargaining unit. Further, all contracts and MOUs are downloadable for offline reference in PDF format.
Also included on the web page are the effective dates for each contract or MOU, links to the minutes of City Council meetings during which contract votes were taken, the approximate number of employees covered by each contract, and a list of the job titles specified by the contracts.
I am indebted to Mrs. Joyce Fitch for much of the historical PDF file data that is on the new page, and wish to thank her for her contribution of information.
Good government demands an informed citizenry. Based on my own experience, even a well educated and careful observer of the happenings on Utica Road encounters difficulty understanding all of the labor issues our city faces without the original contract information. Lately, the Administration has agreed to spoon-feed individual contracts to the members of City Council one-by-one via the background “e-packet” when a vote on a MOU is to be taken. However, these “e-packets” are typically hundreds of printed pages in length, often exceed 15MB in size, and do not offer good summaries of the contract information like those found on the new page.
Despite multiple requests, the city has refused to post all contracts to its website, stating that people who want the information can retrieve it at the public library. I find that response unacceptable, and this new page is my reaction to it.
Today I will begin to bring to the taxpayer what he or she deserves to have know about city government to without making a trip to the public library. Study up: memorandums of understanding are still pending for several bargaining units this year. You will want to know who on council best represents your interests during this election year.
Please feel free to send me any corrections or comments.