Signing bonus idea is an oxymoron

It seems to have become common when public servants commence wage negotiations, demands or offers include a “signing bonus”

  • Aug. 20, 2015 8:00 a.m.

It seems to have become a common tactic that when public servants (including teachers) and their respective unions commence wage negotiations, demands or offers from the employer, usually include a “signing bonus” clause, just as is the case in Qualicum Beach.

I may be a little behind the times, but I always thought a “signing bonus” was something a star athlete/person would be offered to stimulate/coax them to join for reasons that their particular talents exceed the market and becomes that inducement to join a particular organization for mutual benefit. But in the forum of negotiations at any level of public service employment, isn’t this concept just an oxymoron?

Upon renewal of general and across-the-board wage negotiations, the concept of a signing bonus loses its value. The characteristics of “exceptional talents” and “special talents” that are not readily found in the open employment market and thusly diffused in its value. Therefore, if there is no particular added value that the union of employees bring to the table, is the demand or offer for a “signing bonus” a cunning tactic, as in, an exhortative request? If it is just a simple negotiating tactic, then my instructions to my representatives is to walk from the table.

Should any level of governmental management (as apparently it has been known to have taken place in the past, of newsworthy settlements) capitulated to a “signing bonus” perk, are they then not part of a “collusive action” as it relates to my money/tax dollars?

We as rate payers need to express to all levels of governments and managers therein that we should mind our perspective roles and remember that when tax dollars/our dollars are dealt with in the willy-nilly, there may be repercussions from “we the people.”

Camillo TofanoQualicum Beach