It wasn't long ago when UFT President Michael Mulgrew pleaded with the membership to approve a substandard contract claiming the City had a limited amount of funds and if we refused, we would be sent to the "back of the line" and get less money. The scare tactics worked and the members approved the contract with a pitiful 1.4% annual raise for the ten year period from 2009-18, with much of the money back-loaded to as far as the year 2020!
Just yesterday, the City Comptroller, Scott Stringer told the press that the City has a whopping $5.9 billion dollar budget surplus and the City revenues have increased by 7% or 1% over the 2009-13 average of 6%.
Where did the budget surplus come from? Partly from the economic recovery that greatly increased tax revenues and the cost savings from the public sector contracts that our UFT leadership rammed down the throats of City workers. That's right, the City is experiencing record surpluses while freezing school budgets, fails to reduce class sizes, and continuing the Bloomberg tradition of "education on the cheap" policies under Bill de Blasio.
What bothers me most is that most every economist predicted that the City was on track for a major economic recovery and even before De Blasio took office, the City budget was realizing an increase in revenue. Yet our union leadership ignored the economic reality and wanted the new Mayor to look good as a tough negotiator. Therefore, we all received an inferior contract.
All I can say is "with a friend like Mickey Mulgrew protecting our profession, who needs enemies"? For more information on the budget surplus and our union selling out the members, read the ICEUFT blog .