Special Interest and the Public
Public sector unions have been growing
in power for the last forty years.
They have become so powerful that in many areas it is the
unions of government workers, rather than the citizen taxpayers
through their elected representatives, who actually control the size,
cost and quality of essential public services.
Most of the power enjoyed by public
sector union officials is a result of state legislation.
In many states, laws enacted at the insistence of unions give
public sector union special privileges like:
bargaining power – requiring all employees
whether they want union representation or not to accept the
representation of the union certified by the majority of employees.
unionism – forcing public employees who are
not union members to either join or pay a fee to the monopoly union as
a condition of continued employment.
against government – legalized work stoppages
against vital public services
intended to give unions the power to hold these services hostage until
their demands are met.
In addition, unions have used their
political influence to pressure Congress and state legislatures for
laws promoting unionism and protecting unions from competition.
Here are a few examples of such union
special interest laws:
wage laws: Under
these laws, government sets the wages to be paid on public works
construction projects. In
theory, the wages are to reflect the wages paid in the community where
the work is being done. In
reality, the wages are set at union scale whether union workers are
the majority in the community or not.
Such laws cause the waste of billions of tax dollars every year
while protecting unions from competition.
wage laws: These
laws prohibit employees from accepting work at less than the
government set minimum. In
the process, they kick the least able and productive members of
society off the bottom of the economic ladder and protect above market
union wages from competition.
people realize it but unions have used their political power to gain
exemptions from many laws. For
example, unions are exempt from anti trust laws and union violence is
exempt from prosecution under the federal anti racketeering law, the
Hobbs Act, if it has a “legitimate union purpose.”
Because of union political influence,
all too often, local elected public officials have failed to oppose
union special interest laws and private
sector management has decided that public employment labor policy was
none of its business.
As a result, many state and national
elected officials, who might have been expected to oppose legislation
granting public sector unions special privileges and legal immunities
were silent on the issue because they didn’t perceive any opposition
from the public.
In 1973, the Public Service Research
Council was established to mobilize a broad-based citizen counter
force to the special privileges and legal immunities
of public sector union officials and union special interest
influence on public policy.
Is the Public Service Research Council Organized?
The Council is a membership
organization. It is
governed by a volunteer board of directors.
The day to day activities of the Council are conducted by a
The Council does not have state or
local chapters. Its
national office conducts all of its activities.
The Council is a nonprofit corporation
tax exempt under Section 501(c) (4) of the Internal Revenue Code.
Does the Public Service Research Council Do?
The Council conducts a wide range of
activity aimed at educating the public to the dangers of public
sector union power and union political influence on public policy.
It monitors union special interest in
Congress and in the legislatures in all fifty states.
The Council provides information to
elected officials, policy makers and opinion leaders about union
special interest influence.
The Council also mobilizes public
opinion against legislation granting unions additional powers and
privileges and in support of legislation to roll back union special
interest laws already on the books.
is the Public Service Research Council Funded?
The Council is funded entirely by
contributions from those who share its concerns about union special
interest influence on public policy.
It does not seek or accept any government funding.
Because of its lobbying programs on behalf of the public
interest, contributions to the Council are not tax deductible and the Council may not accept support from
public or private foundations.
Annual membership dues in the Council
are $20.00. Many of its
supporters, however, contribute more than that to help the Council
expand its outreach programs.
If you would like more information
about how you can support the Public Service Research Council,
please contact us.
Service Research Council
320-D Maple Avenue East
Vienna, Virginia 22180