The House Labor & Industry Committee passed five anti-worker bills out of committee on Monday, September 24th. This week, the PA House voted to turn Monday, October 1 into a voting session of the House. This means another opportunity for extremists to try to ramrod legislation that strips rights from local governance and harms workers’ rights to organize and join unions.
Representative Dush’s House Bill 297 expands the definition of “maintenance work” so as to narrow the applicability of Prevailing Wage. Representative Grove’s House Bill 861 enables laws passed by the state legislature to supersede ordinances passed by a local government, such as a city council. In effect, this “preemption” legislation allows state governments to supersede any city or county laws with which the state does not agree, such as paid sick leave requirements for employees that some cities have attempted. Representative Fred Keller’s House Bill 1781 amends the Workers’ Compensation Act so it is more difficult for certain types of workers to qualify for workers’ compensation.
Early in September the House Labor and Industry Committee heard hearings on Representative Klunk’s anti-union and anti-worker House Bill 2571. This piece of legislation amends Act 195 to require that public employers notify nonunion members every payday that they are not required to make any payments to the representative union as a condition of employment and without their affirmative consent. It prohibits public employers from making any payroll deductions from wages of nonmembers to the representative union even if the nonmember consents to it. This bill also repeals the two Pennsylvania laws that authorized the payment of fair-share fees. Additionally, Representative Fred Keller’s House Bill 2593 increases the time period a union member has to resign their membership.