PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) - Rhode Island lawmakers were scheduled to hear legislation Wednesday modeled after the controversial labor union crackdown in Wisconsin.
Earlier this month, Republican Representative Joseph Trill introduced a bill (2011-H5882) that would limit the collective bargaining rights of most public employees in Rhode Island.
The proposal was scheduled to go before the House Labor Committee on Wednesday.
Rep. Trillo claims his legislation would lessen the strength and influence of labor unions at the State House.
Among the provisions in his bill:
- All state or municipal collective bargaining agreements would be nullified upon their expiration
- City or town councils would have to ratify all contracts negotiated by school committees
- Public employee contracts would be limited to one year
- Part-time employees would lose health care and pension benefits
- All new hires would be eligible for 401K plan instead of pension system
Only police, firefighters, and corrections officers would be exempt because of the dangers they face on the job.
Wisconsin's anti-union bill was passed by Republican lawmakers last month, but it was later overturned by a judge after opponents accused the Wisconsin Senate of violating the state's open meetings law by voting on the bill without 24 hours notice.
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