Wis. lawmaker proposes new bargaining restrictions

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Local police and firefighters would no longer be exempted from key restrictions on collective bargaining under a proposed bill.

A bill introduced by Independent Rep. Bob Ziegelbauer of Manitowoc would eliminate collective bargaining rights for public safety employees on health care and pension contributions. The bill does not require employee contributions to health care and pension funds, but would allow municipalities to mandate them.

Ziegelbauer says the bill is an attempt to apply key parts of Gov. Scott Walker's controversial budget repair bill to police and firefighters without "blowing up" the entire collective bargaining process. Ziegelbauer voted for Walker's bill.

Walker's bill curtails collective bargaining rights for most public employees, but exempts police and firefighters. A judge has blocked the law from taking effect.

WBAY.com, Wed May 11 2011

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