Source: The Campaign for Quality Services, a project of SEIU and UNITE-HERE
Across the country, more than 50,000 food service workers in cafeterias are united as members of SEIU and UNITE-HERE. FactsOnAramark.info was launched to help inform the public about a troubling record of problems with Aramark accounts that is undermining progress toward higher standards in the food service industry.
Source: Associated Press, January 31, 2008
Under pressure to exercise greater control over private security contractors in Iraq, Bush administration officials outlined stricter rules for these armed guards during a three-hour meeting Wednesday at the Pentagon with 20 companies.
Source: Windsor Genova, AHN News, January 29, 2008 8:38 p.m. EST
Seventeen senators on Tuesday expressed support to an Internal Revenue Service union’s call for the agency to end the use of private tax collectors.
…… The National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) quoted Dorgan as saying in the letter, “While we understand and commend efforts to ensure that all taxpayers pay their fair share of taxes, we believe tax collection is an inherently governmental function that should only be performed by trained and proficient IRS employees.”
Source: Centre Daily Times, Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2008
United Water announced today that the company has been awarded a new contract to operate the City of Jersey City, New Jersey’s water system for the next 10 years. Under the terms of the agreement, United Water will manage the treatment plant, watershed, aqueduct, and distribution system and provide customer service, meter reading and billing services. The final contract terms have been submitted to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the New Jersey Local Finance Board for review and approval.
United Water, whose current contract ends January 31, 2008, has operated the Jersey City facilities through a public-private partnership since 1996.
Source: By Jonathan Martin, Seattle Times (WA), January 30, 2008
The state Department of Corrections plans to stop sending inmates to private, out-of-state prisons and to begin shipping home the 1,200 inmates at those facilities this summer, according to Secretary Eldon Vail.
…… The out-of-state transfers also put more pressure on prisons because CCA — the largest private jailer in the country — will take only healthy, well-behaved inmates.
Source: By Katherine Gregg, Providence Journal (RI), Wednesday, January 30, 2008
………. While most of yesterday’s testimony centered on Carcieri’s attempts to cut employee benefits, the hearing also provided a forum for Carcieri’s top legal adviser, Kernan F. King, to argue for the repeal of what he characterized as an “anti-privatization” law passed last year.
Defenders say the new law simply requires the administration to do a detailed cost-benefit analysis before it hires a private company to do work now done by state employees, but King said the law would stretch a routine contract award out over three years and give new opportunities to sue to anyone potentially affected by a privatization.
…. But James Cenerini, lobbyist for Council 94, American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees, told the committee that “Carcieri’s track record on privatization does not warrant blind trust or a blank check.”
Source: Urvaksh Karkaria, Atlanta Business Chronicle (GA), Monday, January 28, 2008 – 8:55 PM EST
The Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority on Monday OK’d a lease agreement that hands over daily operational control of Grady Memorial and opens the door to a public and private sector bailout.
The handover will be to a yet-to-be formed non-profit management corporation. The names of the 16 members on the non-profit board are expected to be released within a week, Grady board vice chairman Christopher Edwards said. In return for handing over operational control, Grady is expected to receive at least $200 million from the private sector for capital improvements. An additional $100 million in private money could also be raised and the state is expected to inject millions of dollars more.
Source: Associated Press (IN), January 29, 2008
Six black nurses sued a private company operating a Marion County jail Monday, alleging they were fired or forced to leave their jobs because of racism or exposing medical practices that put inmates at risk.
The 10-count complaint alleges Corrections Corp. of America retaliated against the six because they had complained to their supervisors that inmates did not receive prescribed medications, were given wrong medications or were given other patients’ drugs to save money.
Source: Deseret Morning News (UT), Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2008 12:37 a.m. MST
Two bills before the Utah State Legislature could keep government from dabbling into private enterprise. The House Government Operations Committee punted a decision on both HB 75 and HB 76 on Monday. Rep. Craig Frank, R-Pleasant Grove, who sponsored the bills, said the state and local governments need to curb activity that is not part of their core missions.
…….. HB 75 would require the government to set up an advisory board that would review and create an inventory of all commercial activities the government is providing. The board would then report to the government privatization policy board, which has been in place for years.
…….. The other bill, HB76, would abolish the government privatization policy board altogether. Instead, the state, cities and counties would have to create a commission to whom businesses could appeal the operations of publicly funded projects that compete with them, including golf courses, reception halls and recreation centers.
Source: By Bobbi Mlynar, Emporium Gazette (KS), 02:10 p.m., January 28, 2008
The state of Kansas expects to announce plans this afternoon about help that will be available to Tyson Foods workers who will be displaced when the slaughter division closes within the next 60 days.
…… Betty Senn, now director of the Emporia Convention and Visitors Bureau, formerly was manager of the Emporia and Paola job services centers. She was one of many state employees whose jobs were eliminated when the state ceded its operation of job services centers to Dynamic Educational Systems, a private business.
Senn was contacted this morning to gain information about what Tyson workers might expect in the way of hands-on assistance from the state. She emphasized that she is no longer a part of that system, but was willing to talk about services offered in similar situations in the past. She expects those types of services to continue.