Minority Leader Patricia Morgan Testifies on Legislation for DLT Negotiation Training for Town Officials
Part of Municipal Spending Reduction Package to Improve Use of Taxpayer Money
STATE HOUSE –House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan (R-District 26 Coventry, Warwick, West Warwick) testified at a House Labor Committee hearing, on H-5603. This legislation would mandate that the RI Department of Labor and Training offer programs for municipalities, the town council and local school committees to be trained in negotiation techniques and labor law.
According to Representative Patricia Morgan, “Many elected officials have little, if any, experience with labor contracts. Mayors I have spoken with, suggested giving these officials proper training, to help level the playing field during contract negotiations.
"Last year, we discovered that the Institute for Labor Studies and Research has been receiving $500,000 every year through a community service grant. They have been using this money to train their local union presidents in contract negotiations and grievance law. Clearly, that gives the unions a strong advantage over the local officials who have no such training.
"This bill would mandate RI DLT to devise and offer training for local elected officials. Instead of giving the half million to the Institute, let's give it to the Labor department to help our municipalities," she suggested.
Brian Daniels, Executive Director of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns, also testified on H-5603 saying, “One common theme among municipalities is they want to do their jobs well. Therefore, the subject of training has come up. Elected officials are doing the negotiation and need training in order to do this effectively. They have requested this and support it, relating to contract negotiations. There is support and need for House bill 5603.”
Tim Duffy from RI Association of School Committee said, “We support H-5603. Our Association does undertake professional development in this area.”
There was no testimony in opposition to the proposed legislation.
For more information, contact:
Raina C. Smith, House Minority Office
State House Room 106
Providence, RI 02903