Yesterday, HB 4929 on school union dues collection went to the senate floor for a vote where it was passed by a narrow margin of 20-18. Monroe’s own Sen Randy Richardville came down on the wrong side of this bill voting to prohibit public schools from collecting union dues or service fees from wages of public school employees.
This bill came out of the Reforms, Restructuring and Reinventing Committee formed by Richardville to “remove obstacles that get in the way of compromise and innovative thinking” and “look to new way to approach governing.” (1)
It may be a coincidence that this bill was moved out of committee and to the Senate floor for a prompt vote following the announcement by a coalition including both the American Federation of Teachers and the Michigan Education Association that a petition would be circulated to amend the constitution of Michigan and enshrine within it the workers’ right to collective bargaining.
One thing should be obvious, this committee views collective bargaining an obstacle that must be removed and the new way to approach governing is to put collective bargaining out of business.
According to bill analysis provided by the Senate Fiscal Agency, “The bill will have no fiscal impact on the state.” (2) This bill has no purpose other than to undermine the collective bargaining right of workers. Republicans defeated an amendment offered by Democrats that would have allowed the schools to charge an administrative fee to the union for the service of automatically deducting dues. Schools routinely auto-deduct many other expenses from payroll, none of these other deductions were addressed by this bill.
Richardville wasn’t the only local official to support this bill; Rep Dale Zorn’s vote was counted among the “Yeas” when this bill came to the floor last September. Voters should remember that when they go to the polls in November.
Listen to the David Hecker interview by Tony Trupiano on The Tony Show WDTW 1310 AM.