Friday, March 25, 2011

5% of a Salary is politics only, Not truth

There is a lot of communication within the media today that is stating the State of Florida is over spending in the FRS system and that the people who are public employees are receiving something for nothing. Further, the rhetoric from the far right Tea Party followers is saying that it is time the public workers gave back for all the years they have taken.

If I may be so bold as to spell out the process for everyone. First and foremost, what the public employee receives is their base pay. Within the public sector, this base pay is less than their counterpart in the public realm. Then, many of the public employees receive their pension pay. This is not an optional amount of money, this is a simple percentage of their total pay, and it is placed into a fund. This fund is most often the State funded, Florida Retirement System (FRS). The employee is not able to access that money, and or use it until they formally retire and arrive at the State mandated retirement age. Further, many employees receive some form of a health care plan. Some receive full care; others pay a small amount into the system.

If I am to use this example for myself, I receive $42,750 per year for my pay. I then receive $4,081 for the year in pension pay, and another $5,700 for my health care. The Tea Party that is running Florida in 2011 may say that as a teacher of ten years, I receive $52,531. Yet this is not the truth. The truth of the matter is I receive a total take home pay of $42,750 before taxes.

The State of Florida would like me to consider that their plan is going to save us all money. In this plan, they will take my base pay of $42,750 and deduct 5% into the FRS. This means I will be paid $2137.50 less, or a take home pay of $40,612. If I am to add in my Insurance (if I am allowed to still receive this) I get a total take home pay of $46,312. In year one of this program I lose $6000. What is the lifetime accumulative total for my loss.

Once again, the people that are running the State are doing so without regard for the people that voted them into office, they are simply creating math to save themselves.

Today, Governor Scott stated that without saving the FRS we are sure to fail. There is not specific truth to this, yet he created numbers to prove it. To the members of the House and Senate: It is your job to maintain balance. You have taken the time to follow a party line of hard, very far right minded concepts, which, historically destroys the people. Anytime something leans too far over, the world will find a way to balance itself out, yet the results are often more tumultuous than what got us there.

First an education bill with unfunded mandates, then destroy Unions without any true reason other than due process, and now this. 2011 is not going to lead to a successful 2012 if, as Republicans we don't practice what we preach, and offer good government. It is time to lead properly, be fair and responsible, and don't follow a party line…follow the line of the people who voted you into office.

On a final note, this is how Rome Fell, and we are not Rome, we are Florida.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Chamber Comments are a Gross Misrepresentation

The following was a letter sent to the Florida Chamber of Commerce Tonight, after Reading the following link
http://www.flchamber.com/docs/NR_GovtUnionsTargetCentralFloridaLawmakerswithWisconsinStyleProtests_030311.pdf

Edie Ousley - and the Florida Chamber of Commerce

Good Morning to you. My name is Cade Resnick and I am one of those Central Florida Teachers.

As an organization, you should be ashamed of yourselves. I will assume, based on your e-mail, that you either don't have children, and or don't care about the Standard of Education in Florida for your children.

The Seminole County Teachers that gathered to share with representatives the need for a different type of Bill received the same type of arrogance from their leaders that you show in your organization.


 

Quite Frankly, it is groups like yours that do not help education in Florida become what it needs to be, world-class. I offer to you the same offer I make to all legislators.. an opportunity to leave your ivory tower in Tallahassee and come into my classroom. Become a teacher for a month. Rather than sit there and say that all we (teachers) want is money and power, come try it out.

Quite frankly, I know how the chambers work, and I know how many of you are struggling, so rather than fix your own house, you attack an industry that is designed to train the next generation. Shame on you.


 

I also realize that as a chamber you don't like Unions, yet in the case of Florida, and the educational establishment, you don't understand the purpose of the Union.
Last year, through SB6 the Chambers said that only Testing matters. If that is the case, then please accept all the FCAT students who the State Representatives have helped to create.

Last year, through SB6 the Chambers said that teachers are the ones failing our students. Then proceeded to incite the same type of anger toward the Teachers Unions.

There is a lot more to last year, yet let's start over fresh.

This year that chamber again says only testing results matter - so teachers become amazing and teach to a new test.


 

To the Florida Chamber and all the Legislators, we are not creating Widgets. Every Child is not the same and every situation cannot lead to an Ivy League education. Most teachers do everything they can to make a difference, yet some students dont want the help. No matter how many nuggets of knowledge a teacher shares, sometimes the child just does not want to learn. What then...where are the parents, the leaders, and most importantly, where are the systems in place to help a child who prefers automotive over chemistry?

As a chamber, if you want to help...then help..if you want to hurt..then carry on..but stop bullying. It is not appropriate.

Finally

As a chamber, make it a priority to send your business leaders into the classrooms. Send them in huge numbers and help to teach all the teachers how amazing you all are. Do the same for the students. Better yet, why not just help the students realize that the same children, who have parents in your Chamber..are not entitled to graduate, they need to work for it. After all you are all Republicans..and so am I