Senate Commerce Committee to take up payroll deduction, collective bargaining bills tomorrow morning!


Senate Commerce Chair Julie Lynn, after the hearings on SB 212 that bans payroll deduction for association or union dues by public employees and SB 179 that essentially ends collective bargaining for state and municipal employees, told the press she likely would not work the bills.

But somehow, she seems to have had a change of heart. She plans to work both anti-union, anti-public employee bills in the Senate Commerce Committee tomorrow morning.

These bills were opposed by KNEA, AFT, Kansas Organization of State Employees, the Fraternal Order of Police, several school superintendents, and a host of individual state and municipal employees. The only supporters were three organizations that have nothing to do with public employees – the Kansas Chamber of Commerce, Americans for Prosperity, and National Federation of Independent Businesses. And we know why. As KCC lobbyist Eric Stafford told the committee on a similar bill two years ago, “I need this bill to get rid of public sector unions.”

Both bills are considered to be political payback for the pushback public employees have given the legislature and governor over the reckless income tax cuts and public employee engagement in the 2014 elections.

The committee meets tomorrow morning at 8:30 in room 548-S. We can’t think of a nicer way for Topeka area teachers to spend an hour during this glorious spring break!

And if you can’t be there, you can phone and email the members of the Senate Commerce Committee.

You might want to share some of our points on SB 212 with members of the committee.

  • I believe that it is my duty as a professional to be actively involved in my professional association because doing so strengthens teaching and learning conditions, offers a mechanism for problem solving and most importantly gives me a solid platform from which I can advocate for my students.
  • Previous changes to the dues deduction process restricted the use of dues for political activity. Far from strengthening my paycheck, this bill seems punitive and restricts my colleagues and myself from making choices as consumers particularly when the restriction does not apply to other organizations.
  • I voluntarily choose to be a member of my professional association, just as I would voluntarily choose to contribute to United Way a 403B investment product or AFLAC as an insurance provider.
  • This bill legislates that as a teacher I am permitted to give via payroll deduction to organizations that meet a specific viewpoint but not to one that meets my own personal viewpoint.

Links to the Commerce Committee members’ emails are below.

Julia Lynn

Susan Wagle

Tom Holland

Molly Baumgardner

Jim Denning

Oletha Faust-Goudeau

Jeff Longbine

Jeff Melcher

Rob Olson

Mary Pilcher-Cook

Richard Wilborn

Click here to use the KNEA contact your legislator portal!