April 19, 2013


NJ: CWA protests NJ lottery privatization plan that could lead to dozens of job losses. The New Jersey Treasury Department said today that 63 of the state lottery’s 136 public employees could lose their jobs if the Christie administration signs a contract with a private company to take over parts of the lottery NJ.com

NJ: Hard Questions, Heartfelt Concern Abound at Camden Schools Forum. Mayor Dana Redd played host. She did not hide the fact that she supports the state intervention even though it was her board appointees who led the district for the last two years. The audience – a mix of city residents, district teachers and others — had plenty of pointed questions, with some taking shots at Redd’s leadership and others expressing concerns about charter schools steadily replacing the district schools. The comments were hardly ringing endorsements of the state’s plans, either, with some sharply critical of Cerf and what they see as his and Christie’s broader political agenda to privatize public education. NJ Spotlight

LA: Jindal won’t seek legislative backing on LSU deals. Bobby Jindal said Thursday he won’t seek legislative approval of his administration’s LSU hospital privatization agreements, though both the House and Senate have voted that they want such decision-making authority…. The Republican governor is pushing to privatize all but one of the university-run hospitals that care for the poor and uninsured around the state and train many medical students. This week, the Senate adopted a resolution by Sen. Ed Murray, D-New Orleans, that includes a requirement that the hospital deals get approval from the Senate Finance Committee. San Francisco Chronicle

LA: Opinion: Tulane and LSU use privatization for capital gain at expense of poor. Eight years after Katrina, LSU and Tulane still use their political capital to ensure the old Charity Hospital building stay closed. That way plans for a publicly funded research hospital, which the two schools would use, can progress. In the process, LSU and Tulane displaced Lower Mid-City, a neighborhood that had come back after the storm thanks in part to federal grants. The institutions, in accordance with other health care reforms in Louisiana, have pushed out the public hospital system and privatized it whenever possible, further disenfranchising the poor. The Hullabaloo Online           

FL: Brainstorming Baker County Commissioners look to privatizing, other means to grapple with budget. The Baker County Commission tasked the county manager this week with researching privatizing services and curbing building regulations as ways to raise money to balance future budgets and avoid further dipping into valued reserves….Suggested areas of privatization included: waste hauling, right-of-way mowing, emergency medical services, animal control, courthouse security, dump truck usage, recreation and consolidating purchasing. Florida Times-Union

FL: Opinion: The Parent Trigger Bill: A shot at privatization. The current legislation being considered by the Florida legislature (known as the Parent Trigger Bill) is the latest assault on the public education system. Promoted as a means of parent empowerment, (nothing about turning a profit) the Parent Trigger Bill allows parents to petition for dramatic changes at failing public schools. However, most parent groups feel it’s nothing more than smoke and mirrors. Careful analysis of this legislation reveals its clear but unstated goal, public dollars for private companies and a diversion of resources from the public education system. Coral Daily Breeze

UT: Tooele County cuts more jobs, privatizes local poverty assistance. Citing “a major financial crisis,” Tooele County will no longer publicly subsidize its food bank, transitional housing, emergency poverty assistance or domestic violence assistance programs, opting instead for an agreement with Valley Mental Health to privatize those services, officials announced Wednesday. Eleven county employees also will be laid off as part of the privatization, which begins May 15 after a transition period. Deseret News

NC: Editorial – Legislators’ ‘fixes’ for public education may inflict irreparable damage. For a group of politicians who claim they want to strengthen our public schools, the Honorables have a strange way of going about it. In their world, better public schools can be had only by siphoning off students and money into charter and private schools, and by eliminating the cap on class sizes in the lower grades, a factor that has been shown to improve academic achievement. StarNewsOnline.com