TSEA had another successful Lobby Day on March 26, 2013, with 141 members attending, 17 of whom were first time attendees. It was an even more exciting Lobby Day than usual due to the back to back committees scheduled throughout the day to hear TSEA’s own legislation and the bills we are closely watching.
The Senate Finance, Ways, & Means Committee heard the Treasurer’s Pension Reform Bill. TSEA’s Executive Director Robert O’Connell spoke out against the Pension Bill to the Senate Finance Committee, along with TEA’s lobbyist over concerns that the proposed plan is unfair to future state employees and will compromise the recruiting and retaining of talented, quality state workers and teachers. The bill passed unanimously, 11-0 and is headed for the Senate Floor.
The House State Government Committee also met at 8:00AM and heard the Campfield/Casada bill, which attempts to classify TSEA as a union and strip the association of their right to provide services to and representation for state employees. Representative Casada presented amendments, one of which removed the word “union” from the bill. Representative Todd requested that the bill be rolled one week to review the new language of the bill with amendments. The bill will be heard next week on April 2, 2013.
From there, members blanketed the War Memorial Building and Legislative Plaza to meet with their elected officials and had a good time advocating for their fellow state employees’ interests.