DONNELLSON – State Rep. Jerry Kearns (D-Keokuk) and State Sen. Rich Taylor (D-Mt. Pleasant) announced today that they will be sponsoring a forum on Saturday beginning at 2 p.m. at the Central Lee High School Cafeteria.
The “Listening Post” will focus on HSB84 and Senate File 213, which are identical bills moving through the Iowa House and Senate. Kearns said the bills, in his opinion, will drive down wages, cut health care, eliminate services and degrade the quality of life for Iowans.
The bill changes collective bargaining instruments of public employees including negotiations, payroll deduction processes for union dues and political contributions, and could potentially pull all collective bargaining concerning health care and retirement contributions.
In a release earlier this week to members, AFSCME President Danny Homan wrote, “Let me be clear: this bill completely guts collective bargaining for public employees in Iowa. If we could’ve predicted what “Wisconsin on steroids” meant, this would be it. Nearly every topic of bargaining that was mandatory is now illegal. The only thing left that has to be bargained is base pay. Grievances are off the table, there is no requirement for “just cause” for firing an employee, seniority is gone, all dues deductions are gone, and re-certification is required for every contract, plus the union has to eat the cost of that election. These are just a few of the points that take this bill from a “thoughtful review,” as Representative Deyoe suggested, to a full-fledged vindictive attack.
Dave Heaton indicated Thursday afternoon that he would be at the forum on Saturday.
“Right now it’s all about listening,” Heaton said.