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Iowa House to hold hearing on collective bargaining bill

posted Mar 3, 2011, 11:29 AM by Unknown user

| by Jason Hancock | Iowa Independent | March 2, 2011 8:49am |
The public will get the opportunity to sound off Monday on legislation proposed by Republicans that would weaken collective bargaining rights for Iowa’s public employees.  A hearing on House Study Bill 117 will be held in the Iowa House chamber on Monday starting at 6:30 p.m. The bill, which was passed out of committee last week after 15 hours of debate and stall tactics by Democrats, makes numerous changes to collective bargaining laws, ranging from allowing the legislature or governor to veto decisions made by an arbitrator to denying unions the ability to negotiate their health insurance or retirement plans. Restrictions or limitations on outsourcing would be lifted, and unions would no longer have any say regarding layoffs. The bill also allows employees to become “free agents,” who can negotiate their terms of employment directly with employers even if they are in a union shop.  Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal (D-Council Bluffs) said last week that the bill “repeals collective bargaining rights, plain and simple. And that’s all it seeks to do.”  ...