Wisconsin Judge Rules Against Law That Limits Union Collective Bargaining

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Wisconsin judge rules against law that limits union collective bargainingA circuit court judge in Wisconsin has struck down the State’s law that strips nearly all collective-bargaining rights from public employees.

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Dane County Circuit Judge Maryann Sumi overturned the highly debated legislation, ruling that GOP lawmakers broke the State’s open meetings laws by approving it. Her decision likely will be reviewed by the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

The news provider reports that Sumi’s decision may prompt Republican lawmakers to pass the measure again. Earlier this year, the legislative process to advance the bill — which would limit collective bargaining right for most public employees and cut their health and pension benefits — gained national attention.

In February, thousands of pro-union protesters, as well as some Tea Party advocates, gathered outside of the Wisconsin State Capitol to express their opinions regarding the law. Fourteen State Senators, all Democrats, fled the State to avoid meeting the quorum that was required to vote on the measure.

Republican lawmakers eventually passed the law on March 9, and it was signed by Governor Scott Walker on March 11. Walker has said that the law will help close the State’s $3.6 billion budget shortfall.

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