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House Panel Kills Bill On Public Unions

February 8, 2012, 12:21 PM

House Panel Kills Bill On Public Unions
PIERRE, SD - Members of a House panel have decided that public employee collective bargaining will continue in South Dakota.

The House Commerce and Energy committee voted to kill House Bill 1261, which would have prohibited public employees from bargaining with state and public school districts or branches of public service.

The bill's main sponsor, Rep. Brian Liss, says union negotiations are a zero-sum game and will not improve minimum wages in the state. The Sioux Falls Republican also says no lawmakers will speak in favor of his bill because they fear getting attacked in their next election.

Opponents say the bill is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist in a state where strikes are unlawful. They also say collective bargaining gives public employees a voice.

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