Loading
Search
NEWS STORIES

City Council Members Vote to Lower Union Wage Rate Submitted: 04/08/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray

City Council Members Vote to  Lower Union Wage Rate
RHINELANDER - Most city council meetings are fairly quiet.

But what brought Rhinelander residents out tonight was a battle that's become a common one in Wisconsin.

"Equal pay for equal work,"

That's what Union workers wanted to maintain at tonight's city council meeting in Rhinelander.

"We are going to be advocating that this is not how we entered this agreement in good faith," AFSCME staff representative, John Spiegelhoff said.

"Therefore we're advocating for the city to not go through with this ordinance change and to vote it down."

The city is looking for ways to save money.

One way is to lower the wage rate on new department of public works hires by four dollars an hour.

"Before you make the move to reduce four dollars an hour from the wages of people who do the type of work that are covered in the contract which is a tremendous cut in pay," said Rhinelander resident, Dennis O'Brien.

"It really would be fare and prudent at your part to review this more carefully."

A union rep says doing so won't just affect the department of public works.

"This is going to adversely affect labor relations within the city if it goes through," Spiegelhoff said.

"As well as the businesses that are going to be adversely affected."

But the city says it doesn't have more money to give.

"The words that I heard were we want more not less. There is no more." Rhinelander Alderman, Mark Pelletier said.

"If you look at the tax increase that the city has done in the past few years, there's not much capacity to raise taxes on our residents going forward, said Rhinelander Alderman, Alex Young.

"There just isn't money in the piggy bank to keep going the way we're going."

The council voted unanimously in favor of the decrease.

"All those in favor signify by saying "I" "EYE" votes opposed. Motion carried. Ordinance stands."

Young thinks the new wage rate is still a competitive rate.

This new proposal will not affect the current workers, only the new hires.


Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com





 IN OTHER NEWS

Play Video

RHINELANDER - Three bear cubs find themselves temporarily staying at Wild Instincts after someone illegally shot and killed the mother bear.

The DNR says the bear was shot on Wednesday, but it's still unknown who exactly shot the animal, or why they did it.

+ Read More

SHEBOYGAN - SHEBOYGAN, Wis. (AP) - Authorities have identified two men who died when their single-engine plane crashed in a farm field in Sheboygan County.

The Sheboygan County Sheriff's Office said Saturday the pilot was 67-year-old Dennis Hall of McHenry, Ill., and the passenger was 19-year-old Filip Smecko of Janesville, Wis.




+ Read More

Play Video

ANTIGO - When police showed up to a car crash near Antigo this week, the driver seemed discombobulated and out of sorts.  Sunday night, Pao Vang, 33, told officers he had just flown in from vacation with someone else, even though he was the only one in the car.  But it's what officers did find in that car soon after that has Vang in trouble.

Police towed the car from an intersection near the Langlade County Airport (where Vang said he just came from) to a nearby gas station.  There, officers noticed bags full of what appeared to be marijuana sticking out of duffel bags in plain sight.  They got a search warrant and found 133 pounds of high-grade marijuana.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - Five years ago Army veteran Beth Bowman was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and lost her ability to walk on her own. 

It was crushing news to the once active 43- year- old veteran.

But this week she tried out a new device at the Rhinelander Veterans Affairs Clinic that gives her a new outlook on life. 
 
"She has very limited or no use of some leg muscles," said Rhinelander V.A. Physical Therapist Dr. Wesley Spurgeon. 

The disease broke down the ability for her brain to talk to the nerves in her legs.

 She went from a cane to crutches to a wheelchair. 

"It was kind of crushing, I was using a cane within a year of my diagnosis," said Bowman. 

Last month Spurgeon offered some hope to Bowman. 

He learned about a nerve stimulator at a class.

"We place electrodes over the top of the muscle we want to stimulate," said Spurgeon.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - Stephanie Schneider will not face criminal charges for animal mistreatment.

After more than three months of waiting for a decision on potential prosecution, Oneida County Assistant District Attorney Mary Sowinski announced her choice not to press charges on Friday afternoon.

Schneider was the operator of It Matters to One, a dog rescue operation in Sugar Camp. In February, sheriff's deputies seized 39 of her dogs, later arresting Schneider and recommending animal mistreatment charges.

Sowinski wouldn't give a reason why she decided not to press charges against Schneider.

+ Read More

Play Video

RHINELANDER - You can find a lot of stressed out resort owners headed into Memorial Day weekend.  A Rhinelander-area resort manager feels a little better about that stress now that his business won big.

Brekke's Fireside Resort won the Wisconsin Lodging Directory's 2018 cover photo contest.  The resort beat out 10 other finalists after finishing second in the contest last year.  Resort manager Dan Brekke took the winning photo last fall and found out about the win Friday morning.

+ Read More

MINOCQUA - You often see politicians in dress clothes, sitting in the capitol building, voting and arguing on the latest bills. But on Friday, Representative Rob Swearingen (R-Rhinelander) spent a part of his afternoon shadowing a McDonald's employee.

Peter Siegler is a senior at Lakeland Union High School and has been working at the McDonald's in Minocqua for two years. He's on the autism spectrum, but hasn't let that stop him.

+ Read More
+ More General News
Search: 





Click Here