SENATE BLOCKS MANDATORY COLLECTIVE BARGAINING LEGISLATION
On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) procedural motion to advance debate on mandatory federal collective bargaining legislation (S. 3991) fell five votes short of the 60 needed. The motion failed by a vote of 55 to 43. (Both Texas senators voted against the legislation.)
The current version of the bill was similar to earlier versions and would require cities and towns over 5,000 population to enter into collective bargaining agreements with their public safety employees. However, unlike earlier versions, this one exempted sheriffs’ deputies in states that currently do not provide for collective bargaining for those employees.
In any form, the National League of Cities (NLC) opposes this bill on the grounds that it interferes with state and local laws, violates principles of federalism, and may be unconstitutional. With time running out in the lame duck session, this vote signals that the bill is, for all practical purposes, dead for this legislative year.
By Neil Bomberg and reprinted with permission from the National League of Cities.