Bill to create Collective Bargaining Freedom Act passes senate despite opposition from Oberweis
Sen. Jim Oberweis (R-North Aurora) expressed his opposition on the Senate floor Thursday to a bill that removes local government power from collective bargaining.
The bill was sponsored by Sen. Ram Villivalam (D-Chicago). Senate Bill 1474 creates the Collective Bargaining Freedom Act, which gives the authority to state governments rather than local governments to enact rules or laws pertaining to collective bargaining.
Oberweis questioned why such a bill was needed.
"I assume you generally believe in local control and letting local governments make decisions for themselves," Oberweis asked Villivalam, who said he believed collective bargaining rights should be at a state level and not local.
"You don't think this is something we should let local government do?" Oberweis pressed. "This is a clear attempt by Springfield to take charge of a situation where individual communities are attempting to make decisions for themselves."
Oberweis said local communities should be able to make their own decisions.
"If they believe something different than we do here in Springfield, they should have that right in that matter," Oberweis said.
The Collective Bargaining Freedom Act would mean employers and labor organizations covered by the National Labor Relations Act could execute agreements requiring membership in a labor organization as a condition of employment to the fullest extent authorized by the National Labor Relations Act, according to the bill.
The bill spells out that the authority to enact laws or rules that restrict the use of union security agreements between an employer and a labor organization vests exclusively with the General Assembly and prohibits local communities from enforcing their own laws on collective bargaining.
If made into law, the bill is effective immediately.
The bill passed the Senate with 42 Yes votes and 12 No votes. It still needs to be passed in the House and was referred to the House Rules Committee on Thursday.