A House proposal that backers say protects workers’ paychecks has been sent to Gov. Jay Nixon.
The bill (SB 29) requires that a worker give permission once a year for a union to take dues out of his or her paycheck, or to use them for political purposes.
House sponsor, Rep. Eric Burlison (R-Springfield), says it’s about protecting free speech.
“I think that is important that [the union] yearly, at least, get the permission before they’re speaking on behalf of someone,” Burlison said.
Rep. Clem Smith (D-St. Louis County) says the bill is deceiving and wastes the time of the legislature in the final days of the session.
“This is an issue that does not exist,” Smith said. “People do it on their own will. They sign up on a form already to have additional money go to political action committees from labor unions and that money is spent to support labor activities. This deal about dues dollars … I need proof. We’re up here to be shown proof, no proof has been brought up.”
The legislation only applies to public employee unions and exempts first responders.
It cleared the House on an 85-69 vote.