As lawmakers prepare to hear a day of testimony on proposed right-to-work legislation at the Capitol, the chair of the committee is promising the bill will be the subject of “an orderly and thoughtful process.”
Senate Labor and Government Reform Committee chairman Steve Nass (R-Whitewater) says the bill, which would prohibit requiring workers to pay union dues as a condition of employment, will be the focus of a nine hour hearing. An executive session on the bill is then expected to take place “shortly after” 7 p.m. this evening.
Nass says the bill is a “clean and simple proposal,” which has “been debated for years and now is the time for Wisconsin to make a decision. I believe every employee should have the right to determine membership in a private organization and that decision should not cost them their livelihood.”
The hearing is expected to attract a long line of people waiting to testify, while union groups have also scheduled a protest on the Capitol steps, which is set to start at noon. Wisconsin AFL-CIO President Phil Neuenfeldt said on Monday that they will be encouraging those attending the rally to stop by the hearing afterwards and register their opposition.
The right-to-work legislation is on the fast track at the Capitol, with a vote in the full Senate expected this week and the Assembly set to take up the measure next week. Governor Scott Walker has indicated he will sign the bill if it makes it to his desk. If adopted, Wisconsin would become the 25th state to enact such a law.