For Immediate Release:
February 28, 2011
Contact: Dale Butland
Columbus, Ohio — Innovation Ohio, a newly formed progressive think tank in Columbus, kicked off its organizational launch today with a stinging indictment of the attempt to strip Ohio teachers of their collective bargaining rights. Under the terms of Senate Bill 5 —introduced by State Sen. Shannon Jones and supported by Gov. John Kasich and many conservative law-makers — teachers would effectively lose many of the collective bargaining rights that have been in place since 1983. Supporters of the bill say the change is necessary to control costs and balance.
At the news conference, Innovation Ohio said that SB 5 would result in “relatively minor short-term state budget savings,” all of which “could be achieved through the current collective bargaining law.” Innovation Ohio also released a report released a “Ohio Teachers and Collective Bargaining: An Analysis.” Among the report’s findings:
Innovation Ohio Communications Director Dale Butland said:
“Facts are important – especially when passing major legislation or radical changes to long-standing public policy. If the proposed changes to the current collective bargaining for teachers won’t significantly impact Ohio’s budget deficit, and if teachers are already agreeing to the kind of reforms we need to improve the system and student performance, there is no compelling reason to repeal or weaken a law that that has been in place since the Reagan Administration.”
Former State Representative Steve Dyer, an acknowledged expert on education policy in Ohio, appeared with Butland and took questions from reporters.