On July 10, Governor Tom Corbett signed the State budget into law, but also exercised his power to line-item veto 72 million dollars in spending. According to the State AFL-CIO, the cuts were intended to be punitive for the State General Assembly's refusal to pass the Governor's pension privatization plan. More information about the pension system can be found here.
The on-going boycott of the office supply store Staples continues. A July 14 announcement that Staples terminated its contact with the American Postal Workers us a ruse, according to union Presdient Mark Diamondstein:
“Staples and the USPS are changing the name of the program without addressing the fundamental concerns of postal workers and postal customers. They intend to continue to privatize retail operations, replace living-wage Postal Service jobs with low wage Staples jobs, and compromise the safety and security of the mail. If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s a duck."
A few days earlier, the American Federation of Teachers announced their support for the boycott, and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees also announced their support. The Pennsylvania AFL-CIO unanimously voted to support the boycott the week before.
July 23 will bring activists to Pittsburgh for the Community Service institute. August 22 is the Committee On Political Education institute at Linden Hall, and on September 18, the COPE golf outing tees of in Madison, PA.