LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) - The University of Michigan and Wayne State will take a financial hit this week from the state legislature because they extended their contracts with university employees, which means the new Right-to-Work law will not impact those employees. Michigan state, however, will be held harmless.
When the governor signed the RTW legislation in December, the republicans did not anticipate this would happen. Instead of protesting in the streets, union leaders went back to their employers and asked them to re-open their existing contracts with the hope those contracts could be extended before the RTW law took effect later this month.
Wayne State University just did that and claim they saved $10 million dong it. The University of Michigan did a five year extension, too. Now, the House higher education budget committee is prepared to slice state aid to those two schools.
At Michigan State University, labor did ask the msu board of trustees to do the same thing, but the university president and the board declined to do that because MSU might lose $15 million which could have resulted in higher tuition costs.
Some republicans are not happy that the other two universities would try to allegedly circumvent the RTW law even though there was nothing illegal about the way they did it.
"I would not rule it out. If there is some benefit, that is one thing and I would have to consider that also," said Senate GOP leader Randy Richardville.
But Richardville reports lawmakers deliberately delayed the implementation of RTW to local boards to exercise local control and re-do contracts if both sides wanted to do that.
The show down, excluding MSU, is set for Tuesday.