$300 Billion War Beneath the Street: Fighting to Replace America’s Water Pipes
Hiroko Tabuchi, New York Times
Two powerful industries, plastic and iron, are locked in a lobbying war over the estimated $300 billion that local governments will spend on water and sewer pipes over the next decade.
Are Private Prisons Using Forced Labor?
Josh Eidelson, Bloomberg Business Week
Close to 60,000 current and former detainees are suing Geo Group Inc., one of the largest U.S. private prison companies, for allegedly violating federal anti-trafficking laws by coercing them to work for free under threat of solitary confinement.
Opinion: Maggots, food shortages and contraband — this week in Michigan prison scandals
Nancy Kaffer, Detroit Free Press
In three separate recent incidents, inmates at the G. Robert Cotton Correctional Facility found moldy food, crunchy dirt in mashed potatoes, and maggots in or near food, provided by outside contractor Trinity Services Group of Florida.
The “Amazon Amendment” Would Effectively Hand Government Purchasing Power Over to Amazon
David Dayen, The Intercept
Language buried in Section 801 of the National Defense Authorization Act would move Defense Department purchases of commercial off-the-shelf products to “online marketplaces.” That means any website that offers paper clips or office furniture.
Letter: Privatizing library would be a mistake
Patricia A. Martinelli, The Daily Journal
Vineland Public Library is in danger of becoming privatized by an out-of-state company which claimed that it save the city about $350,000 a year. However, representatives of LS&S were unable to clearly state exactly how they would produce those savings.
UCLA student groups advocate for medical center valet workers
Sharon (Yu Chun) Zhen, Daily Bruin
Victoria Salgado, an organizer at Local 3299, said many workers are concerned for their job security because they received unclear notifications in July and September about their employment dates.
The federal workforce is ‘deeply in jeopardy,’ expert says
David Thornton, Federal News Radio
The specter of privatization is looming large in the minds of federal unions, who fear proposed moves at the Veterans Affairs Department will go in that direction. And President Trump urged privatization of the Federal Aviation Administration this summer.
How the Prison Phone Industry Further Isolates Prisoners
KALENA THOMHAVE, The American Prospect
The high profits of expensive phone calls and video visits are often too lucrative for prisons—which can get a share of those profits—to pass up.
Pay gap creating crisis in human services sector, agencies say
Worcester Business Journal
Some Justice Resource Institute staff work in the same building as state employees who are doing similar jobs but earning more money, resulting in “literally dozens” of workers leaving for state jobs in the last three years.
Consultant: BRF lacks cash, experience to adequately manage hospitals
Biomedical Research Foundation’s lack of cash could cause the state to lose funding for free and low-cost health care at the former public hospitals the foundation operates in Shreveport and Monroe.
More than 70 foster children missing in Kansas
Jonathan Shorman and Hunter Woodall, Wichita Eagle
Lawmakers were concerned that Kansas Department for Children and Families Secretary Phyllis Gilmore appeared unaware that three sisters have been missing from a northeast Kansas foster home since Aug. 26.