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Long-time Labor Council President Sam Bianco dies on September 28th

10.11.10

OCTOBER 2010 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Long-time Labor Council President Sam Bianco dies on September 28th

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION, September 30th- Sam Bianco, President of the Greater Wilkes-Barre Labor Council, East Main Street in Wilkes-Barre, died on September 28th at the Geisinger Medical Center in Wilkes-Barre. The Greater Wilkes-Barre Labor Council is affiliated with the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) labor federation in Washington, DC.

Mr. Bianco won consecutive terms as President of the labor organization since first being elected in 1978. “We will all miss him. He was our brother, friend and will be impossible to replace,” said Edward Harry, a retired

Business Representative for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) District Council 87 Union. Mr. Harry served as Vice-President of the labor federation and under the constitution of the organization will replace Mr. Bianco until December 2011, when elections will be held.

However, a special election will take place to elect a Vice-President before the end of the year.

Mr. Bianco had been ill with cancer during 2010 but continued to participate in labor union activities. On September 18th, he canvassed in the Wyoming Valley on behalf of political candidates for the November election that are being supported by the AFL-CIO. On September 20th, Mr. Bianco entered the hospital after experiencing stomach pain.

“I only hope we can continue his vision and involvement with what he put in place in helping the people in need in the Wyoming Valley. He made sure that the labor council was involved with the community” said Walter Klepaski, the labor council’s AFL-CIO Community Services Labor Liaison of the Wyoming Valley United Way and a member of the Greater Wilkes-Barre Labor Council Community Services Committee.

Mr. Bianco represented the labor community on numerous boards and committees throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania including: Northeast Pennsylvania Area Labor Manangement Council; United Rehabilitation Services; the United Way of the Wyoming Valley; St. Vincent de Paul Kitchen; and the American Red Cross Wyoming Valley Chapter.

He was a retired District Manager of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU). The union once represented thousands of workers and hundreds of garment shops throughout the region. Only a hand-fill of shops remain today.

This reporter first met Mr. Bianco approximately 20 year ago when the Union News began publishing. He visited the newspapers’ office several times a week for the past 15 years discussing union activities, political issues and current events.

Mr. Bianco resided in Vandling, located in upper Lackawanna County, and is servived by his wife of 60 years Clara, a son David, and two daughters, Barbara and Sandra and four grandchildren

Sid Michaels Kavulich pledges to support labor if elected State Representative

10.11.10

OCTOBER 2010 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

Sid Michaels Kavulich pledges to support labor if elected State Representative

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION, September 25- Democratic nominee for the Pennsylvania House of Representives 114th Legislative District seat, Sid Michaels Kavulich, is attempting to gain the support of the labor community for the November 2nd election and he pledges to support organized labor if elected.

Mr. Kavulich, a former radio personality, television reporter and newspaper sports writer, during a interview at the newspaper office stated he was represented by NABET/CWA Union Local 23 while employed by WBRE Channel 28 and Channel 22 WYOU television stations and both of his parents were union members. “My mother was a member of the ILGWU, (the International Ladies Garment Workers Union) and my father was a member of the union when he was a bus driver in Taylor. The Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) represents the Riverside School District bus drivers. His wife Linda is a member of the SEIU, Pennsylvania Healthcare Union.

Mr. Kavulich stated if elected he would not support making Pennsylvania a “right-to-work” state, which would ban union security clauses in labor agreements. Pennsylvania Republican Gubernatorial candidate Tom Corbett’s campaign supports legislation that would forbid union security contract language. “I want workers to go to work and be employed with dignity. I would go to Harrisburg with a common-sense approach to policies,” said Mr. Kavulich.

Mr. Kavulich’s Republican opponent is Dan Naylor.

Jim Wansacz currently represents 114th and did not seek re-election.

LABOR AND CITIZEN ACTION GROUPS TO CHALLENGE CORBETT ON PROPOSED WORKER TAX AT RALLY WITH NEW JERSEY GOVERNOR CHRIS CHRISTIE

10.11.10

AFL-CIO
Media Release

October 11, 2010

For Immediate Release
Contact: Marty Marks 412.352.0317
Marc Stier, Penn Action 215.880.6142


LABOR AND CITIZEN ACTION GROUPS TO CHALLENGE CORBETT ON PROPOSED WORKER TAX AT RALLY WITH NEW JERSEY GOVERNOR CHRIS CHRISTIE

Workers and Activists Say Corbett’s Proposal to Tax Workers for $3 Billion Unemployment Debt is a Fowl Idea

Williamsport, PA – Labor and citizen action groups will use the occasion of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s campaign stop for Tom Corbett in Williamsport today (Monday, October 11) at 10:00 AM to launch a “Quack Attack” on the Republican candidate for governor’s proposal to increase pay roll taxes on workers for purposes of repaying a $3 billion debt owed to the federal government for unemployment compensation.

“If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck – it’s a duck!” declared Marc Stier, leader of the citizen issue advocacy group Penn Action. “Tom Corbett cannot mask a payroll tax hike imposed on working people simply by calling it another name. He can’t have his duck and eat it too,” Stier said.

Corbett, who earlier this year took a no-tax pledge, has consistently denied the payment made by workers into the unemployment fund is a tax. By referring to the workers’ payroll deduction as a contribution, Corbett has suggested he did not violate his no-tax pledge when he proposed increasing the workers portion of the payment but not the employers.

Corbett and Christie will be greeted by a coalition of citizen and labor activists armed with rubber ducks, hand-made signs and assorted other web-footed paraphernalia as the two Republican leaders converge on the Lycoming County Republican campaign headquarters at 1750 East Third Street in Williamsport for a Monday morning rally.

“This is the kind of political double speak that turns voters off,” said Ben Uzdilla, President of Utility Workers of America Local 406, one of the labor leaders participating in the demonstration today outside of the Lycoming County Republican event. “The bottom line is we can’t be distracted by no-tax pledges and other nonsense. Taxing workers and not their employers is grossly unfair and we have to stop it,” said Uzdilla.

Patrick Gleason is a spokesperson for Americans for Tax Reform, the group that authored the no-tax pledge Corbett signed. Speaking about Corbett’s proposal, Gleason said, “It is what is commonly known as a payroll tax, and this is not a matter of dispute.”

“Raising payroll taxes on workers and letting corporations off the hook is a pretty fowl smelling duck of an idea if you ask me,” Uzdilla said.