The issuance of a lay-off notice is a time-honored tactic used by management to put a little more heat on workers to cough-up wage concessions.
Well given a chance the other day to engage in the traditional game, the governor declined. After all he said he would change the culture in this town and by sitting on his lay-off notices to some 48,000 state workers, he did just that.
According to the state contract, workers deserve a 30 day heads up that the Big Guy might send them home on October first and employees were braced to read that in their Labor Day weekend pay envelope.
In another example of the gov's now infamous RPA, relentless positive action, the governor sent the signal that he was confident the two sides could come up with $145 million in worker concessions so the notices were stuffed in the drawer…for the time being.
That collective sigh of relief from the employee ranks was palpable but the gesture does not mean the two sides will resolve their differences which are significant.
The labor guys have argued that there are other ways to find those savings. One way is to reduce the number of non-union supervisors; the unions claims there are too many of those folks.
The governor's bargainers say they are willing to look at that, but so far they have not signed off and the governor's spokesperson doubts there is not enough time to realize those savings before the contracts expire next month. And the unions have not budged on giving more concessions noting that over the years they have given more than enough at the office.
Hence despite the goodwill gesture by the governor, the two sides appear to be going no where fast. In fact they just filed empasse statements which will open the door to bring other entities into the talks.
In another overture to the unions, the governor did order a study on supervisor issue.
All of this adds up to one conclusion, Gov. Rick Snyder is not Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin.