New York’s 40-year-old Public Employees Fair Employment Act—best known as the Taylor Law—was intended to protect the public from strikes while extending collective-bargaining rights to government workers. But while public-sector work stoppages have become rare, municipal and school officials fear the Taylor Law unduly favors public-employee unions at taxpayer expense.
An Oct. 16 forum hosted by the Empire Center for Public Policy will examine whether reforms are needed in the law to redress the intended balance. Featured speakers at the half-day conference will include Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy and Jerome Lefkowitz, chairman of the state Public Employment Relations Board.
The forum—which starts at 9 a.m. at the Albany Institute of History and Art, 125 Washington Ave.—will also feature a distinguished panel of experts who will debate the issue.
The program will begin with presentations by Terry O’Neil, managing partner of the Garden City office of Bond, Schoeneck & King, PLLC, and E.J. McMahon, director of the Empire Center and a Manhattan Institute senior fellow. O’Neil and McMahon are co-authors of a special report on the Taylor Law to be issued at the forum.
Panelists responding to the presentations will include Richard C. Iannuzzi, president of New York State United Teachers; Fran Turner, legislative and political action director for Local 100 of the Civil Service Employees Association; Charles Brecher, research director of the Citizens Budget Commission; Hornell Mayor Shawn Hogan; and Vito DiCesare Jr., retired superintendent of the Beacon School District.
The Empire Center is a non-partisan, independent think tank.