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					                        (ISSN 0023-6667)
                                                                          Endorsements made in school board races
                                                                        Judy Seliga-Punyko,                     Seliga-Punyko, Miernicki,        million by the state, which says
                                                                                                            and Westholm are all former          it will eventually pay.
                                                                          Mike Miernicki,                   members of the Duluth Feder-             Contracting out of the dis-
                                                                        Bill Westholm, Levy                 ation of Teachers, having            trict’s bargaining unit work had
                                                                        are Labor-Endorsed                  taught in ISD 709. All three         Miernicki and Westholm
                                                                                                            were also involved in athletics      recalling a time when custodial
                                                                            Following screenings Sept.      as coaches or athletic directors.    work was privatized in a “cost-
                                                                        8, Duluth AFL-CIO Central               The ISD 709 Long Range           cutting” measure in the school
                                                                        Labor Body delegates unani-         Facilities Plan, the Red Plan,       they worked in.
An Injury to One is an Injury to All!                                   mously endorsed candidates in
                                                                        all three races that will be on
                                                                                                            surfaced during the screenings
                                                                                                            as expected. The endorsed can-
                                                                                                                                                     “The rooms weren’t clean,
                                                                                                                                                 equipment and money went
WEDNESDAY                                                VOL. 117       the Nov. 8 General Election         didates all expressed support        missing, hired workers didn’t
SEPTEMBER 21, 2011                                         NO. 6        ballot. All candidates had been     for the plan, excitement for the     show up– it was fiasco,” said
                                                                        invited to the screening.           facilities and innovations it will   Miernicki.
                                                                            Delegates also endorsed the     bring, and optimism at the dis-
                                                                        Duluth Public Schools operat-                                              See X
                                                                                                            trict’s prospects.
                                                                        ing levy at all three levels that       They were led through the
                                                                        will be on that ballot.             screenings and questions by
                                                                            For Mike Miernicki, an at-      Central Body Vice President
                                                                        large candidate, the endorse-       Alan Netland, who moderated
                                                                        ment came just five days            the hour long event, which was
                                                                        before he was engaged in a          attended by five of seven can-
                                                                        three-person field, with two        didates.
                                                                        advancing. He won easily with           In the screenings the three
                                                                        3,783 votes, a 2 to 1 margin        who would later be endorsed
                                                                        over his November opponent.         said they would support the 3-
                                                                            Miernicki, a first time can-    tiered operating levy that will
                                                                        didate, is seeking the seat that    be on the ballot in November.
                                                                        was held by Gary Glass, who                                                      Bill Westholm
                                                                                                                “I will personally vote for
                                                                        stepped down.                       the highest level of funding,”
                                                                            Judy Seliga-Punyko in           said Miernicki.
                                                                        District 2 is the only incumbent        Seliga-Punyko said she sup-
                                                                        seeking re-election and she was     ports all levels. “Of 133
                                                                        endorsed.                           Minnesota school districts, one
Rick Darby (blue shirt) couldn’t believe his family’s good                  Bill Westholm received the      third are seeking operating
fortune when Carpenters 361 members Tom Kesti, Frank                    labor endorsement in his first      levys, and even more are
Montez, and Jerry Gervais volunteered to help fix remodel-              bid for an elected office. He’s     expected,” she said. “Just like
ing problems after his family was ripped off by a contractor.           running for the District 3 seat     all your electricity and gas
                                                                        that was held by Tim Grover,        bills, the district’s have gone
Jackie Halberg, Trades come                                             who retired after 13 years.         up.”
                                                                                                                Westholm said he supports
 to the aid of a bilked family                                                                              the levy, “we have to, per pupil          DULUTH
    District 4’s City Councilor Jackie Halberg says when con-                                               funding has been flat for three
stituents call her with a problem she likes to invite them out to                                           years...we have no choice if           City Council
coffee to address their concerns. That’s even if the person is                                              we’re being responsible.”                    At-Large
unhappy with her position on an issue. Last month she got a call                                                The State of Minnesota has              Linda Krug
and coffee wasn’t going to be part of the resolution process.                                               abdicated its responsibility to
    “This family had gotten into extensive remodeling of their                                              public education by withhold-              Emily Larson
home but the contractor up and left with their money,” said                                                 ing funds to school districts                District 1
Halberg. She said they only called her out of frustration because                                           and keeping per pupil funding
they had pursued every other avenue and were living in a mess                                               flat as costs increase. Per pupil        Jennifer Julsrud
                       See 6                                     Mike Miernicki
                                                                                                            funding was increased by $50                 District 3
                                                                                                            in the special session.                  Sharla Gardner
Labor wins all its Primary Election contests                                                                    All three said asking local
                                                                                                            voters to approve operating                  District 4
    All of the Duluth AFL-CIO       dates far surpassed all other       695 votes but her November
Central Labor Body’s endorsed       candidates’ vote totals.            opponent received 649. She          levies is the only way to main-           Jackie Halberg
                                                                                                            tain school districts. In all the
candidates advanced from the
Sept. 13 Primary Election
                                        Emily Larson received
                                    4,918 votes and Linda Krug
                                                                        and her campaign have a lot of
                                                                        work to do to win in Novem-         state is withholding $3 billion      School Board
which had only three contests.      got 4,860. Their two Nov. 8         ber.                                from public schools as it battles          At-Large
    Four candidates came out of     General Election opponents             Mike Miernicki, a School         its own budget problems and
                                                                                                            partisan politics that puts stu-        Mike Miernicki
the field of six for city council   received a total of 1,592 votes.    Board At-Large candidate,
at-large. Labor’s two candi-        Two people will be elected to       advanced even though he was-        dents at risk.                             District 2
                                                                                                                Seliga-Punyko said Duluth
                                    the council from that field of      n’t Central Body-endorsed
                                                                                                            schools have been shorted $30         Judy Seliga-Punyko
                                    four.                               until Sept. 8. He received 3,783
                                        The council District 4 race     votes beating his sole Nov. 8                                                  District 3
                                    is considered a Special             General Election opponent by                                                 Bill Westholm
                                    Election and is only for a two-     better than 2 to 1.                                                         Operating Levy
                                    year term, with other council          Turnout was unusually low
                                    races being four year terms.        with council races the largest                                              Vote “Yes” on all
                                    Jackie Halberg was named by         offices on the ballot. There                                               three levels of levy
                                    the council to replace Kerry        wasn’t even a mayoral primary
                                    Gauthier in District 4 after he     to spur turnout as Mayor Don                                              Please Vote
                                    moved on to the Minnesota           Ness is running unopposed.
                                    House of Representatives in            Only 6,620 votes were cast                                              in Tuesday,
                                    last fall’s elections.              out of 53,814 registered voters,                                          November 8ʼs
                                        Halberg finished first in a     a 12.3% voter turnout. Only 16
                                    field of five in the Primary with   people (0.59%) voted at UMD.             Judy Seliga-Punyko              General Election
Labor Merit Badge clinic for Scouts Oct. 15 Rally Tues. for postal service
    Lee Popovich, Treasurer of       youth to question why workers       e       m       a       i     l      The U.S. Postal Service is attacking its workforce in the worst
USW Local 1028, and the              are being blamed for our           traditions of corporate America just a few years after showering
Voyageurs Area Council of the        nation’s woes,” said Popovich.         Applicants need a merit        management with obscene bonuses. Attacks on collective bar-
Boy Scouts of America, have          Our volunteers have a full day      badge card signed by their        gaining rights and benefits, and shutting down stations continue
organized an American Labor          planned for the Scouts, learn-      Scout Master. They must           weekly with the Duluth Main Office sorting facility apparently
Merit Badge Clinic that will         ing about grievance and arbi-       obtain and read the merit badge   next on the list. Service is last on the list, as it is in their name,
take place in the Duluth Labor       tration, strike and lock-out,       book, and complete pre-merit      with management looking to reduce your 6-day delivery cycle.
Temple Saturday, Oct. 15. The        globalization and much more.”       badge requirements.                  The four USPS employee unions have scheduled a rally for
training will be limited to 30       He said a highlight will be the        Cost is $10, but scholar-      the Duluth Civic Center on Tuesday, Sept. 27 from 4:00 to 5:30
First Class Boy Scouts.              viewing of Tom Selinski’s film      ships are available. The clinic   p.m. to send a message to the nation and Congress to support
                  “With all of       “Spies in Steel” from the 1928      runs from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.     H.R. 1351, a bill that addresses the USPS financial crisis. It has
               the attacks on        expose by Frank L. Palmer.          Refreshments and lunch will be    206 co-sponsors but not Rep. Chip Cravaack.
               the labor move-       Selinski is a member of IBEW        served.                              On Monday President Obama endorsed 5-day delivery and
               ment and the          242.                                   Popovich said adult volun-     higher rates, but was in favor of a $6.9 billion pension refund.
               working poor by          The registration deadline is     teers are encouraged to attend       (Find out more at and
               the radical right,    Friday, Sept. 30 to Donna           and will receive training.        see letter next page)
               I hope this           Hickok, Voyageurs Area                 For more contact Lee
               course        will    Council, 3877 Stebner Road,         Popovich,         McKenna moving to AFSCME
Popovich       inspire today’s       Hermantown, MN 55811 or             or        Jason         Young,
                                                                                                    Chad McKenna, the only Field Organizer the North East Area
                                                                                                 Labor Council has had, accepted a position with AFSCME
  8 th Congressional District                                               The clinic is sponsored by
                                                                                                 Council 5 as their Duluth-based Political Organizer on Sept. 15.
                                                                         the VAC, the Duluth AFL-CIO“The job was too good to pass up because I’ll still be able to
                                                                         Central Labor Body and its
                                                                                                 stay in Duluth,” McKenna said. “I’ve been thinking for about the
                DFL Fall Fundraiser                                      Community Service Program.
                                                                                                 past year that I’d like to work for an affiliate and
                    Keynote Speaker                                                              focus on more specific issues and campaigns.”
                                                                                                                                        He       was
                 Senator Amy Klobuchar                                     Sheet Metal Workers’ Local 10                            hired by the
                  Saturday, October 15                                                                                              NEALC          in
                Hibbing Park Inn (Hwy 169/Howard)
                                                                               Retirees’ Luncheon                                   April 2007 fol-
                                                                                                                                    lowing        the
   Come hear the three announced                                              Tuesday, Oct. 4, 1:00 p.m.                            A F L - C I O ’s
                                                                                                                                    New Alliance
  8CD candidates debate the issues!                                                Burrito Union                                    initiative.
                                                                                                                                        N E A L C McKenna
  $35/person     Sponsor Table $500 (Seats 8)                                                                                       President Alan
 Social Hour 5:00 Dinner 6:30 Silent Auction                                      I.U.O.E. Local 70                                 Netland said, “Chad has done
                                                                                                                                    more than we could have possi-
        For tickets contact Cathy Daniels:                                Monthly Arrowhead Regional Meeting bly hoped for. His skills and his
          218-262-2008 or 612-747-0550                                       Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2011, 5:00 P.M.                      ability to work effectively with
          PO Box 494, Hibbing, MN 55746                                                                                             such a diverse group in our
                                                                                Duluth Labor Center, Hall B                         labor community is truly
   Paid for by 8th Congressional District DFL, Cathy Daniels,Treasurer    Dave Monsour, Business Manager, (651) 646-4566 remarkable. He has really
                                                                                                                                    helped our labor movement to
                                                                                                                                    grow. I have personally found

                                                                                                                                    it very satisfying to work with
                                                                                                                                    him and to share in our accom-
                                                                                                                                    plishments and struggles. I
                                                                                                                                    have no doubt that he will do
                                                                                                                                    well with AFSCME Council 5
                                                                                                                                    and look forward to continue to

          LUNG CANCER                                                                                                               work with him in that capacity.
                                                                                                                                    we are lucky that he will still be
                                                                                                                                    around here in northeast
                                                                                                                                        Netland said the NEALC

                                                                                                                                    Board is meeting Sept. 27 and
                                                                                                                                    will set a course for finding a
                                                                                                                                    replacement. Interested indi-
                                                                                                                                    viduals should be in touch with
                                                                                                                                    him at
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PAGE 2                                                                                               LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011
                                                                                                             Rally for your Postal Service
                                                                                                                Our American Postal Workers Union Greater Northland Area
                                                                                                            Local has scheduled a rally for the Duluth Civic Center, Tuesday,
                                                                                                            Sept. 27 from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. to save our Post Offices and
    Sometimes you never know                                                                                bring attention to the unfairness of the Postal Accountability &
when you’re gonna have a                                                                                    Enhancement Act. That act forces the Postal Service to prefund
good time. Last week Rep.                                                                                   its retirement fund by $5.6 billion before it ever sells a stamp.
Linda Runbeck, Chair of the                                                                                     USPS has also announced that it is “studying” the feasibility
MN House Tax Committee,                                                                                     of moving our Duluth Plant/Processing operations to the new St.
held a listening session here                                                                               Paul facility. This move would impact over a hundred workers
with local officials. This is the                                                                           here. It also means that delivery for local (North Shore, Iron
person who led the assault on                                                                               Range, Superior, and Duluth) mail would change from overnight
taxes that puts homeowners in                                                                               to 2-3 days. Mail from all over the Arrowhead would get trucked
the crosshairs. She didn’t have                                                                             to Duluth, reloaded on other trucks, and sent to Eagan, MN to be
a clue, was told so, and still                                                                              cancelled/processed. No more Duluth postmark. This new facil-
didn’t. My county commis-                                                                                   ity was designed to consolidate Mpls/St. Paul operations, when
sioner, Peg Sweeney, let                                                                                    mail volumes were at their peak, and now they are looking to
Runbeck have it to the point                                                                                optimize mail volumes for this place, no matter the cost. They
that Rep. Kerry Gauthier was           “The property tax burden         lievable in how out of touch        have to justify the 450 million dollar price tag, after all!
able to smile and play nice.       will be increased by the state,      she was as chair of the tax com-        Our new labor contract has a stipulation that if employees are
    Runbeck was condescend-        but the county will be blamed        mittee. You don’t have to be in     excessed from one operation to another, it has to be within 50
ing in asking how the state        because we send out the state-       touch if your agenda is “no         miles. But there is no work for over a hundred people within 50
could help local officials prior-  ments,” Sweeney told her.            new taxes,” and you abdicate        miles. In the last couple of years, the Duluth Plant has absorbed
itize their decisions. Sweeney         The surprising thing to          any sense of state responsibili-    7 to 10 people from MSP/StP because of reductions in force due
told her, “You’ve already done     those who attended the meeting       ty and thrust it on local com-      to this new facility. I don’t think they’re going to be looking for
that by putting the burden on a    was that Runbeck seemed sur-         munities. Maybe we just don’t       too many people to come back down. Some people may be able
regressive tax system, we’re       prised by the implications of        fully understand what “out-         to transfer to Carrier Operations as there are currently 15-20
responsible for what you’ve        property tax and other changes,      state” means to the inner circle.   vacant positions there, but, if USPS gets it’s wish of 5 day deliv-
done!” She was upset that her      when she had authored them.              Here’s the first lines of the   ery, that will probably eliminate 25-30 thousand Carrier posi-
county residents are upset at          Sweeney said county gov-         Circle Pines, MN website:”...a      tions nationally.
their property tax statements,     ernment has been tightening its      small city with a population of         Hopefully, our congressional representatives will realize this
which will soar because of the     belt to the tune of there now        5,407 — and more people             will result in thousands more unemployed people in their dis-
state ending the Homestead         being 1697 county employees          working in computers and            tricts or state, and they do something (i.e., eliminate PAEA, etc)
Credit, and withholding or         when there were 2500 in 2003,        math than 95% of the U.S. It        so the Postal Service can reduce it’s force in an orderly manner
underfunding Local Govern-         when the last major state cuts       has better public schools than      through attrition and retirement, instead of this radical realign-
ment Aid and public schools.       occurred. The county is still        90% of all U.S. communities,        ment agenda they’re now proposing. If we didn’t have PAEA,
You pick up the tab.               7,100 square miles, the largest      and its public schools are better   the Postal Service would be in the black at least until FY 2017 or
                                   county east of the Mississippi,      than 95% of schools in the rest
  ~NOTICE~                         and has 3,100 miles of road to       of the state.” We would all
                                                                        move there if we were smart.
                                                                                                            2018, giving us time to to do the things we need to do, instead of
                                                                                                            needlessly disrupting the lives of thousands. Post Master
Next issues of Labor World: maintain. Successful programs                                                   General Donohoe wants to reduce the workforce from it’s cur-
Oct. 5, 19; Nov. 2, 16, 30; are being cut, but jails and                    Runbeck was touting the         rent 525,000 to 400,000 now, with major disruptions in service.
                                   courts are full.                     accomplishments of Anoka            We have to slow him down.
     LABOR WORLD                       Runbeck asked if maybe the       County, where she lives, pretty         Please contact your U.S. senators and representatives and tell
  (ISSN#0023-6667) is published    county doesn’t need to take a        much asking why everyone
 semi-monthly except one issue in                                                                           them you want 6-day delivery and local postal stations main-
       December (23 issues).       look at the bigger picture. She      can’t be like Anoka Co., which      tained. Thank you,
The known office of publication is later asked “is there still fat on   is cutting its budget by 7 per-
 Labor World, 2002 London Road, the bone.” She had started out          cent, and that’s “happening all         Steve Holmstrom, APWU Local 142
  Room 110, Duluth, MN 55812.      by saying “The county is the         over” Runbeck said.
  Periodicals postage is paid at
       Duluth MN 55806.
                                   middle child of impacts” on              Outside the Metro we all          Holding Dems accountable
                                   state citizens, and then admit-      live in Circle The Wagons, MN          Editor:
    Send address changes to:       ted to Rep. Mary Murphy, who         because we’re being ignored            Mark Gruenberg’s article in the August 31st edition reporting
Labor World, 2002 London Rd., said she is spending a lot of             for being out of the prosperous     that the building trade unions are not happy with the Democratic
 Room 110, Duluth, MN 55812 time explaining the end of the              Metro loop. Runbeck got an          party or President Obama was very interesting. It reflects my
           6                    7
                                   Homestead Credit to con-             earful in Duluth, and probably      thinking that progressives have been betrayed by Mr. Obama and
                                   stituents, that it’s “hard to        laughed all the way home with       the Democratic leadership. Whether this dissatisfaction will lead
         (218) 728-4469   comes back to deci-     her “you’re not my problem”         to a reformed, more progressive Democratic party or to a
      FAX: (218) 724-1413          sions of local government.”          form of representation. Some-       Republican victory in 2012 remains to be seen. I assume the                                                                                building trades are withholding their support of the Democratic               Runbeck, a Republican            times you never know when
   ~ ESTABLISHED 1896 ~            from Circle Pines, was unbe-         you’re gonna have a good time.      Convention to exert pressure for reform. I cheer their efforts.
                                                                                                               Politicians must be held accountable. When the change we
Owned by Unions affiliated with the
Duluth AFL-CIO Central Labor Body
  Subscriptions: $22 Annually
                                         Thank unions for benefits                                          voted for does not occur there should be consequences. When we
                                         Editor:                                                            are taken for granted repeatedly, then we should take action. The
 Larry Sillanpa, Editor/Manager          Enjoy your Labor Day holiday? The reason we celebrate              primary action available to us is to withhold our support, our
 Deborah Skoglund, Bookkeeper         Labor Day is largely because of the contributions made by             small contributions, our volunteer time, and our vote. Unfor-
    Board of Directors                unions to the betterment of America’s workers. The numerous           tunately, given our “two party” system, withholding our support
Pres./Treas. Mikael Sundin,           beneficial influences of organized labor cannot be ignored. Most      means the far worse Republicans win. How can we break this
Painters & Allied Trades 106;         of the benefits workers now enjoy are directly attributable to        vicious cycle of voting our fears rather than voting our dreams?
V.P. Paul Iversen, BMWED              unions. To cite but a few: the 40-hr. work week; paid holidays           The place to exercise accountability is primary elections. Mr.
1710; Sec. Larry Anderson,            and vacations; sick leave; grievance procedures, collective bar-      Obama, for all these reasons and more, does not deserve a sec-
Laborers 1091; Al LaFrenier,          gaining and generally superior wages.                                 ond term. Many Democrats deserve to be defeated. As we have
Workers’ United Midwest Bd;                                                                                 seen in Wisconsin, there is support for strong progressive, pro-
Mike Kuitu, Operating Engi-              Unfortunately, succeeding generations have come to take
neers 49; Jayme McKenna,              those benefits for granted. Those benefits came about because of      worker candidates. We need strong progressive challengers in
AFSCME 66; Dan O’Neill,               unions and soon became the norm for union workers and many            the primaries. We all need to follow the building trades example
Plumbers & Steamfitters 11;           non-union workers as well. All American workers owe a debt of         and start talking and writing about, recruiting, advocating for,
Steve Risacher, Carpenters            gratitude to Organized Labor for its achievements.                    and supporting candidates who will fight for progressive ideals.
361; Dan Leslie, IBEW 31.                Paul G. Jaehnert, Vadnais Hts., MN                                    Philip Anderson, Maple, WI
LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011                                                                                                                      PAGE 3
Ron Johnson, Fred Strom hire non-union
   Members of Roofers Local       ing contractor in North Amer-     aging partner in Johnson
96 and Sheet Metal Workers        ica based on revenues.            Wilson. J&S Partnership and
Local 10 picketed a roofing          Building Trades pickets are    LRR Partnership II are listed as
and architectural sheet metal     not uncommon in this region as    owners of the Airpark Center.
project over the past two weeks   the over two dozen affiliated         “I went to talk to Ron
at the corner of Haines Road      unions battle for marketshare     Johnson about using non-union
and Airpark Boulevard. The        and jobs for their members.       labor and all he said was ‘it’s
huge Airpark Center roof was      What makes the Airpark Center     the price,’” said Dennis
replaced by non-union Centi-      pickets so troublesome is that    Marchetti, Business Rep. for
Mark Corporation, which took      the building is owned by two      Sheet Metal 10. “It’s just hard
out a permit for $150,000. The    men who made their fortunes       to believe after he made his
building is 34,272 square feet,   in union construction here.       money from union labor.”
which gives you an idea of how       Ron Johnson was a member           Roofers Business Agent
big the roof is.                  of Carpenters Local 361 work-     Vance Anderson said last week
   CentiMark operates nation-     ing with the tools for Heden-     a Border Patrol agent stopped
wide and has opened an office     berg Construction before he       at the picket line in his govern-
in Duluth in the Amendola         started his own business,         ment vehicle.
Building. In August of 2010,      Johnson Wilson Construction.          “Four workers on the roof
Roofing Contractor Magazine       His sons, Dean and Shane, own     pretty much ran down the lad-       Sheet Metal 10’s Mike Ruthford and Dennis Marchetti, and
named CentiMark the top roof-     that union construction compa-    ders and disappeared when           Roofers 96’s Vance Anderson were among picketers at the
                                  ny now. Fred Strom was a man-     they saw the vehicle,” said         Airpark Center last week against Ron Johnson’s hiring of
                                                                    Anderson. “We figured they          non-union CentiMark Roofing for his building.
 Support your local pharmacy                                        must be geographically chal-
                                                                    lenged to run from the Border
 Tell your union, health fund, and employer Patrol.”                                                        
         you want local pharmacy services                               “They scattered like ants,”
                                                                    said Marchetti. “Different
        It’s Better...Keep It Local!                                workers were up there the next
          Your Local             vs           Mail Order                Johnson and Strom had both
 White Drug Pharmacy                         Pharmacies             been active members of the
                                                                    Twin Ports Construction
3Personal service                 Service only by phone/computer Liaison Committee, a joint
                                  No personal contact. How do       venture of Building Trades
                                                                                                                  Union Members
3Consulting at the pharmacy
                                  you get questions answered?       unions and their signatory con-
3Questions answered reliably,     Allegations of re-dispensing      tractors. The group meets                        Receive
   accurately                     product that has been returned    monthly to talk about their
                                                                    issues and to try to resolve                                               %
315 minute service on
    new prescriptions
3Ready RefillTM (Automated
   Refills) authorizations
                                  No ability to customize orders

                                  Two week delivery, often LATE
                                                                    problems before they got
                                                                    worse. “It’s about price” has
                                                                    never been on the agenda.
                                                                        “We meet with them to pro-
3Free in town prescription        Do you want your meds sitting in mote union work, Project
                                                                                                                 Any Menu Item
   delivery                       a 110 degree mailbox?             Labor Agreements and such,
3We contact doctors for refills   Some require you to get your      and then they go and do this,”
3Monthly health screenings
                                  own refill authorizations         said Marchetti.                                Any Drink
                                  Why trust your health & safety to     Johnson and Strom are both
                                                                    retired from construction but
3Free blood pressure checks       a nameless, faceless person?
                                                                    are involved in real estate hold-              Any Time
  Your local White Drug Pharmacy is more reliable                   ing such as Airpark Center.
 than mail order. We are always available to answer Around town there are many
 your questions face to face with a local pharmacist. vacant properties with “Will                               Valid through 12/31/2011

 For a listing of locations visit Build to Suit” signs on them                              Not valid with other offers
                                                                    that use Johnson Wilson’s logo.
                                   Pinetree Plaza                       Airpark Center is managed
                                                                    by Melhus Management and
                                Inside Super One Foods has four tenants: Essentia,
                                      Cloquet, MN                   AT&T, HiRel Systems, and
                             218-879-6768 • 1-800-967-3421 Midwest Medical Equipment                                                     Ask about our
Store hours: Mon-Fri 9am - 8pm • Sat 9am - 5:30pm • Sun 11am - 5pm and Supplies.                                                          Union Room

                                            low rates.                            free hat with a
                                                                                 recreational loan
                                         fast approvals.                                                    
                                            no hassle                                                            505 W Superior Street
                                             lending.                                                                   Duluth
                                       218-729-7733 •                                              218-727-8981
                                                    Member eligibility required. Member NCUA.

PAGE 4                                                                                               LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011
    House of Reps State Fair poll results give snapshot of voters’ positions
    Political wonks love polls.      12,549 people participated and     current, government-issued          Only 25.4% think the constitu-               stay in school until age 18 or
Well, to be honest they even         the results are in:                picture ID before casting a         tion should be changed so the                graduation, whichever comes
love primary elections. A great          When asked if they would       ballot. This year 50.8% believe     legislature can call itself into             first; and 62.5% support pub-
source of public opinion can be      support a right-to-work law,       showing identification should       special session. A governor is               licly funded preschool for all
found at the Minnesota State         meaning workers are not            be a requirement to vote, while     the only person who can do it.               children.
Fair and the state House of          required to join a union or pay    46.4% do not. The numbers are           More than 51% believe an                     Poll takers also believe:
Representatives poll because         union dues as a condition of       a considerable drop as in 2010,     expansion of gambling is war-                    • it should be illegal to use
no one is deciding who will be       employment, 54.2% said yes,        69.1% said yes; in 2008, 67%.       ranted to provide additional                 a cellular phone while driv-
asked the questions. Fairgoers       36.8% said no, 9% undecided.           The 20-day state govern-        state revenue.                               ing, except in emergency situa-
have to walk up and take the             Minnesotans do not appear      ment shutdown still bugged              Fairgoers again said they do             tions (62.3%);
time to fill out a poll. This year   willing to change the state con-   many. Approximately 69%             not want clothing taxed, with                    • anglers should not be able
a lot of very polarizing ques-       stitution to define marriage       believe that current levels of      62.3% saying it’s a bad idea.                to fish with two lines on open
tions were included.                 with 66.5% saying it should not    state funding should remain in      Nearly 85% said no in the 2008               water in warmer months like
    Conducted by the nonparti-       be amended to define marriage      effect if the governor and legis-   poll. Two thirds don’t believe               they can during ice fishing sea-
san House Public Information         as only a union of one man and     lators cannot agree on a state      local governments should be                  son (45.8%). In 2009, 51%
Services, the poll is an infor-      one woman, while 29.8%             budget for an upcoming bienni-      able to impose a sales tax with-             opposed the idea.
mal, unscientific survey of          believe the constitution should    um; 25.2% oppose the idea.          out legislative authorization.                   More than 88% said they
issues discussed in prior leg-       be changed. The question will                                              A pair of education ques-                know who represents them in
islative sessions that may again     be on the Nov. 2012 ballot.                                            tions received strong respons-               the MN House. Believe that?
be topics of discussion in 2012.         A bill vetoed by Gov. Day-                                         es: 65.1% of poll takers believe                 You can find out more at
Last year, a then-record 9,926       ton in the 2011 session would                                          students should be required to     
fairgoers cast ballots. This year    have required voters to show a
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 LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011                                                                                                                                      PAGE 5
IBEW organizes 340 Sears employees                                                                          USW donate to sugar workers
    In a coordinated campaign       quick response system. A web-       as well as a bogus Excelsior list       MOORHEAD, Minn. – In a show of solidarity, the members
seven International Brother-        site was created.                   (names and addresses of work-       of United Steelworkers Local 560 at the Bobcat Manufacturing
hood of Electrical Workers              The unit is an extremely        ers in the prospective unit),       facility in Gwinner, ND donated $10,000 to help locked out
local unions in northern Illinois   diverse group with many             misinformation on voting loca-      American Crystal Sugar workers and their families. That dona-
have organized 340 Sears            African Americans, Latino           tions and misinformation about      tion follows a $5,000 donation USW 560 made in August.
Service Technicians that work       Americans, Arabic Americans,        the union. When a tech with             “During this tough time for 1,300 workers and families, it’s
in a large geographical area.       both men and women.                 over 25 years of service has        good to know we can count on fellow union members to help,”
The effort began last October           In July, although the goal of   asked for time off to attend his    said John Riskey, President of BCTGM Local 167G. “We want
following a similar IBEW            70% authorization cards had         daughter’s college graduation –     to thank the Steelworkers of Local 560 and all the union mem-
organizing victory of Sears         not been achieved, a represen-      he was told “sure, turn in your     bers from Minnesota and North Dakota who have helped us out
workers in Denver.                  tation petition was filed, gain-    keys, take all the time you         since the lockout began.”
    A systematic approach used      ing access to the “Excelsior        want.”                                  ACS workers who live in Minnesota are eligible for unem-
IBEW resources to reach out to      list”, information that was pre-       But when the election            ployment insurance. North Dakota state law does not allow
workers, providing them infor-      viously unattainable. An elec-      results were counted it was 184     union workers locked out of their jobs to receive unemployment.
mation on their legal rights, the   tion date of August 5, 2011         yes – 125 no. It was the largest    ACS plants are East Grand Forks, Crookston, and Moorhead,
benefits of the IBEW, and gath-     with four polling places was        win in IBEW’s 6th District,         MN; Hillsboro and Drayton, ND; and packaging and transporta-
er “authorization for represen-     set.                                which includes Duluth, in           tion sites in Chaska, MN and Mason City, Iowa. Workers at these
tation” cards. A Voluntary              The company played hard-        many years. IBEW is looking         facilities are represented by five BCTGM Locals.
Organizing Committee of the         ball against the organizing with    to organize more Sears Techni-
workers helped identify issues,
build a database of contact
                                    captive audience meetings,
                                    removal of managers, reducing
                                                                        cians, including in northern
                                                                        Minnesota and elsewhere
                                                                                                             NE MN Jobseekers 7, Jobs 1
information and develop a           overtime, lunch gift certificates   across the region.                     The Northeast Minnesota region has three times more job
                                                                                                            openings than two years ago, but job seekers outnumber full-
                                                                                                            time openings 7-to-1, according to the latest Job Vacancy Survey
                                                                                                            from the MN Dept. of Employment and Economic Development
                        With 14,000 unemployed workers competing for 4,800
                                                                                                            unfilled jobs in this region, job seekers outnumber job openings
                                                                                                            3-to-1, the JOBS NOW Coalition found in an analysis of the
                                                                                                            data. But only 2,000 of the 4,800 job openings are full-time,
                                                                                                            meaning job seekers outnumber full-time openings 7-to-1.
                                                                                                               Forty-six percent of all openings are in the two largest occu-
                                                                                                            pational groups—food preparation/serving and sales. These two
                                                                                                            groups have a combined median wage of $7.27 per hour.
                                                                                                               Other findings for Northeast Minnesota job openings include:
                                                                                                               • 35 percent of openings are temporary or seasonal.
                                                                                                               • 58 percent of openings are part-time.

                                              • 73 percent require no education/training past high school.
                                      • The median wage for all openings is $8.67 per hour.
                                                                                                               JOBS NOW’s Cost of Living research shows that in a
                                                                                                            Northeast Minnesota family of four with both parents working,
                                         $$ %!#$             each worker must earn $12.60 per hour to meet basic needs. (A
                                                                                                            PDF is available at
                                                                                                               The region included in the analysis consists of the counties of
                                                                                                                                               Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca,
                                                                                                                                               Koochiching, Lake and St.
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PAGE 6                                                                                                LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011
Dayton brings Jobs Summit tour to Virginia Endorsements made...from page 1
   Everyone is still talking           Dayton said as he approach-      applause. She said 81 positions            Westholm said teachers were sweeping their own classrooms.
jobs, jobs, jobs, which was         ed Virginia the MNTac plant         in her group have been cut.             “They talked of closing our libraries, saying students could go to
every candidate’s mantra            and windmills on the horizon        “We need a new dedicated rev-           the public library, but how will they get there we asked.”
before last fall’s elections.       symbolized the old and new          enue stream to higher educa-               Contracting out was confused a bit with Project Labor Agree-
Minnesota’s “official” jobless      economic development on the         tion and K-12. We’re deliver-           ments, which cover construction projects. After an explanation
rate held steady at 7.2% in         Iron Range. “The steel in one       ing on innovations for a world          of the difference by CLB President Dan O’Neill, the endorsed
August, the same as July.           wind turbine employs many           class education.”                       candidates said they support PLAs.
   Governor Mark Dayton             people up here,” he said as he          Virginia Mayor Steve Peter-            They were all pleased with the turn labor management rela-
continued his job summit tour       spoke of jobs to be saved and       son said cities are finding it dif-     tions had taken in the district under departed superintendent
of Minnesota with a meeting in      jobs to be gained.                  ficult to deliver basic services        Keith Dixon and hoped for more of the same under new
Virginia Sept. 13. After his tour      Rep. Tom Rukavina asked          to citizens and that local gov-         Superintendent Dr. I.V. Foster.
he will convene his Governor’s      that new mining permits be          ernment can’t keep going to the            Miernicki said the teachers and administration saved taxpay-
Job Summit 2011 on Tuesday,         expedited. “Next year will be       well with levies.                       ers money by cooperating on health care changes. About $4 mil-
Oct. 25 in St. Paul (www.posi       130 years of mining on the Iron         Calumet Mayor John                  lion was saved by changing providers.        Range,” he said, “and we’ve         Tourila said they’ve had three             Seliga-Punyko taught in Duluth Schools, coached, served on
   Dayton’s Virginia panel had      done a good job of taking care      levy increases and raised utility       the PTA and finally ran for school board four years ago and won.
many people from business and       of the environment. Windmills       rates twice in recent years.               “I like what we’re doing in the district without state funding,”
education, but no one from          are full of the precious minerals       “There’s nothing more we            she said. “The tough part is making cuts and I hate that. I’m
labor. Few labor folks were in      we need to mine now. We need        can cut,” he said. “We had to           proud of our teachers, our workforce and our programs and I
the audience, but he did hold a     those permits for new mining.”      close our skating and hockey            hope to maintain them.”
labor lunch after the summit.          No one questioned the envi-      rink. It was the worst thing to            Miernicki taught in Duluth schools for 36 years in a number
Labor World was not among           ronmental issues associated         consider in northern Minne-             of capacities. He served his DFT union as a vice president for
the invitees.                       with sulfide mining.                sota, but we had to do it.”             four years. He currently serves on two scholarship committees.
   Panelists told Dayton they          Frank Ongaro of the non-             Others spoke of not being           “We have an excellent school system,” he said. “I believe in our
need faster permitting process-     ferrous Mining Minnesota            able to refill the jobs that pro-       students and our system.”
es, easier access to investment     association wanted a “Minne-        vide the services.                         Westholm spent 30 years in Duluth Public Schools as a
capital, a better field of per-     sota is open for mineral devel-         Sen. David Tomassoni                teacher and principal. He served for 15 years on the principal’s
spective workers, and an edu-       opment” message sent out, and       joined many in the audience in          negotiating team. He served in administration as director of
cational system that will better    a cabinet level mining position.    praising Dayton for standing            school operations, which he said gave him a good look at the
prepare students to become the      “All we see is delay” instead of    up to Republican attacks on the         entire district. “I’ve been through the ups and downs and dealt
workers in the future.              thousands of jobs, Ongaro said.     IRRRB’s $60 million Doug                with them in the past. I’ve hired staff and that will all be benefi-
                                    On Monday Dayton said he            Johnson fund, public service            cial to school board service.”
                                    will create a mining position.      jobs, education, health care,              “We can now focus on programs, our kids, and our commu-
                                       Dr. Sue Collins of the           and pensions. “We’re going              nity,” Westholm said of the recent changes the district went
                                    Northeast Higher Education          backwards,” Tomassoni said.             through on their facilities plan.
                                    District told Dayton that there     “There has to be government
 Education MN                       have been many great educa-         funding, that’s what taxes are
 Member Discounts!                  tional success stories on the
                                    Iron Range. “We have one
                                                                        for, not about making the rich
                                                                        richer.” He said only 68 of the
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                                                                        700 richest Minnesotans live in
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 LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011                                                                                                                              PAGE 7
    Family gets back on track through Jackie Halberg, Carpenters...from page 1
with the work that had been          floor bedroom with a full bath      and that hurts me the most,”       three carpenters are here help-
done being very poor quality.        to the old West Duluth house.       said Darby tearing up. “What       ing us for nothing,” said an
    Halberg decided about the            “We posted the job on           these guys are doing to help us    emotional Darby. “It’s unbe-
only good thing she could do         Craig’s List and Chris Dunker       is unbelievable.”                  lievable.”
for them was to find help put-       of Two Harbors said he would            Darby had tried the police,        Kesti said being semi-
ting the house back together.        do it,” said Rick Darby, whose      the Department of Labor, the       retired he enjoys projects like
    “I called Craig Olson of the     mother and father owned the         Better Business Bureau, and an     this one. “Volunteer jobs are
Building Trades and he came          home when the project started       attorney to resolve their prob-    fun,” he said. “We’re just here
through,” said Halberg on            in 2009. Dunker was operating       lems but to no avail. He said      fixing things and making a
August 31. She had stopped by        under the name of Great             the city and the inspectors        family happy.”
to see how the job was going.        Northern Construction. “He          “treated us really well for all        Bryce Sjoquist and Terry
    “I called Steve Risacher of      said he could do it for $19,500     the trouble we’ve had. They        Bohlin of Painters & Allied
Carpenters 361 and he found          but his price kept going up as      could have shut us down a long     Trades Local 106, Olson’s             Rick Darby shows his City
some guys who could start fix-       he proceeded,” said Darby.          time ago.”                         local, followed the sheetrock-        Councilor, Jackie Halberg,
ing the problems,” said Olson.           City inspectors came to the         “I finally called our city     ing Carpenters, taping and            the poor construction that
    Tom Kesti, Jerry Gervais,        job and found sheetrock on          councilor Jackie Halberg and       mudding the joints.                   needed the help she found.
and Frank Montez volunteered.        walls that hadn’t had the elec-
    “It was a real mess, said        trical work inspected.
Montez. “You should’ve taken             “Dunker told me he was a
a picture before we started.”        master electrician, but the
    It was easy to see it was ter-   inspector said no permit had
rible construction work that         been taken out and that Darby
had been done. The sheetrock         didn’t have a master’s license,”
work was laughable to anyone         said Darby. That was in May
but the homeowners. Four             2010 and Dunker immediately
sheets would meet at an inter-       packed up his stuff and left
section and joints ran floor to      after talking on the phone to the
ceiling.                             electrical inspector said Darby.
    “This isn’t how we do it,”       His parents were out $40,000
said Gervais. He was shaking         and the work was half done.
his head and smiling at                  “We’re at $60,000 now and
sheetrock of different thickness     we’re still not done,” Darby
meeting anywhere on a wall.          said. He started doing the work
    Kesti said the sheetrock was     himself after Dunker left.
the biggest problem but walls            Then in November his
needed straightening and win-        father died. The life insurance
dows needed leveling as well.        benefit was used to “bring this
That was just the carpentry.         house back to life” is how
Water was leaking from the
roof to the first floor.
                                     Darby said it. “I could deal                       It can be quite a task to put everything back together after an
                                     with it and I was doing the best
    The family had a gable roof      I could but my mom is so                         accidental injury. The pain, both physical and financial, of the hurt
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                                                                                       BOB FALSANI   JIM BALMER   JIM PETERSON   SEAN QUINN   ERIC BEYER   STEPHANIE BALMER

Labor-endorsed city council at-large candidate Emily
Larson, left, got a round of introductions from AFSCME
Council 5’s Ryan Welles at the PRIDE Festival Sept. 3rd at
Bayfront. Mike Welch of AFSCME 66 helped work the
labor booth at the event. Gina Doller, right, greets Larson.
Linda Krug also advanced as a Labor-endorsed at-large
candidate. The North East Area Labor Council was one of
the sponsors of the Pride Festival. Labor will join the GLBT
community in opposing the Minnesota Constitutional
Amendment that will be on the November 2012 ballot ask-
ing voters if marriage should be defined as being between
only a man and a woman.
PAGE 8                                                                                                LABOR WORLD NEWS, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 2011

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