Skip Rimsza: Union Control of Phoenix City Hall at Stake in Phoenix Mayoral Race

We missed this one from a few days ago…

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 5, 2011
CONTACT: Skip Rimsza

Phoenix voters will decide whether labor unions should continue to control City Hall when they vote for a new mayor next month, according to a letter written by former Mayor Skip Rimsza.

Rimsza, who served as Mayor from 1994 through 2004, called the upcoming mayoral contest a “watershed election where voters will decide who City Hall will serve.”

He said three of the candidates in the race, Greg Stanton, Claude Mattox and Wes Gullett all have ties to labor unions with a lot to gain from a Mayor sympathetic to their cause. But he said the interests of union bosses are not always the same as those of the city’s taxpayers.

He pointed to recent controversial actions as proof that union labor bosses are calling the shots within Phoenix city government, including the Council’s approval of pay raises amidst budget cuts and last year’s passage of an emergency food tax. Both decisions benefitted city labor unions.

“Mr. Mattox is supported by the largest public employee union in the city and stood with them by voting to support the food tax increase and the pay raises,” Rimsza noted.

“Mr. Gullett was a lobbyist for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which is the largest public employee union in the country. Nationally, they pushed for the boycott of Arizona. Locally, Mr. Gullett tried to get Maricopa County government to bargain with his union supporters,” he said.

“And Mr. Stanton was an ardent opponent of SB 1070 and is supported by several labor and union groups such as the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Union and the AFL-CIO affiliate Maricopa Area Labor Federation, who together have stood against Arizona and supported boycotting the state,” Rimsza added.

Rimsza said the City has some of the best employees in the nation, who work hard to keep residents safe and to improve the quality of services despite budget constraints. “However, the Union Bosses, who feed off their union dues have become out of control because they are out to serve their best interest – not the taxpayers of Phoenix,” he warned.

Rimsza has endorsed Peggy Neely for Mayor and said in his letter that she is the only candidate “with a track record of asking hard questions, supporting fiscal responsibility and bringing people together, which has always been the culture of Phoenix leadership.”

Click here to read Rimsza’s Editorial.

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