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Another union racket: End it with Pa. House Bill 1507

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Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Pennsylvania's public employee unions are pressuring state lawmakers to preserve the act of using public resources to deduct dues — money used for union political purposes — from members' paychecks. Unique to these unions, it's a practice that must end. It's not only unfair to public employees who disagree with what these unions do with their hard-earned money but to taxpayers who foot the bill for processing those paycheck deductions.

House Bill 1507 would take such payroll deductions, part of these unions' contract terms, off the collective-bargaining table. Establishing “paycheck protection” for public employees, it would end what the Commonwealth Foundation describes as another form of the corruption that has put many legislative leaders and aides behind bars: using public resources for political purposes.

Commonwealth CEO Matthew J. Brouillette says these unions are trying “to defend the indefensible” and “using scare tactics.” They're falsely claiming that HB 1507 is about right to work and would destroy their unions.

The truth? There would be no effect on private-sector matters. Public-sector unions would still bargain collectively. Public employees could still join them and contribute toward union political activities — but they'd have to write checks to do so, which would force bosses to be more accountable about members' money.

For taxpayers, for public employees, even for unions that don't use state resources to plunder their members' wallets, passing HB 1507 is the right thing to do.

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