November 9th, Christmas comes to TSA, the baggage screeners ratified their first union contract, joining with the powerful public-sector union, the American Federation of Government employees (AFGE).
Under the new contract, the TSA uniform allowance has risen from 232.00 to 446.00 a year courtesy of the taxpayers. A union rep said the changes in the labor contract “will not impact the TSA budget”.
So you double the uniform allowance for 44,000 federal security screeners without spending more money. Like to learn that trick!
TSA’s budget has steadily expanded since its creation, from $4.7 billion in 2002 to $7.8 billion in 2012.
John Mica chairman of the house committee criticized TSA management for spending their time and energy regulating “tie tacks and tattoos” when they should have been “improving upon their poor track record of security blunders and missteps. He has called their actions “significant security meltdowns”’
TSA officers at Honolulu international habitually failed to screen checked baggage for explosives—sometimes even clearing bags without opening them.
However in 2011, Obama appointed TSA administer John Pistole reversed the order and announced that bargaining collectively would be allowed. He assured the public that the labor negotiations would not affect security. “Bargaining would not be allowed on security policies, procedures or the deployment of security personnel or equipment, pay, pensions and any form of compensation, proficiency testing, job qualifications or discipline standards.” (DID THEY MISS ANYTHING?)
Once the union negotiations began thins started to change. One of the principal changes negotiated in the contracts is an overhaul of the TSA’s pay for performance system. Bidding for vacation time will be based on seniority. Standards have been established for the temperature of the work environment and the visibility of tattoos.
The FBI wouldn’t be allowed to unionize for security reasons. We’re told that the TSA is supposed to be out there on the front lines of national security. “just because a strike is illegal doesn’t mean it won’t happen and amnesty for strikers just becomes another bargaining chip in the negotiations”.
Unionization of the TSA is being hailed as a historic win for public sector unions. AFGE’s political action committee spent about half a million dollars supporting demo candidates like McCaskill. AFGE members fork over $14-$16 per paycheck to the union, this now adds an additional $16 million a year to the union.
Source—weekly standard, kate havard