Right To Work Committee Ends Early To Prevent Disruption

WISCONSINREPORT.COM (02/25/2015) – The Senate Committee hearing on the proposed Right To Work legislation, held last night, was ended early because of a threat of disruption by demonstrators, according to the committee chairman.

Senator Steve Nass (R-Whitewater), Chairman of the Senate Labor and Government Reform Committee announced that Senate Bill 44, the Right to Work Bill passed on a 3-1 vote. Voting in the affirmative were Senators Nass, Wanggaard, and Marklein. Voting No was Senator Wirch. Senator Larson was present but refused to cast a vote.

As a result of passing through the Senate Labor and Government Reform Committee, the bill moved to the Senate Floor for debate and a vote on today, Wednesday, February 25th.

“I voted in favor of Right to Work because the proposal offers significantly more positives for the people of Wisconsin than negatives,” Senator Nass said.

“We will join 24 other states that offer individual employees the freedom to decide if they want to be dues paying union members,” Nass said.

Chairman Nass stated that he made the decision to enter into executive session earlier than the planned time of 7:00 p.m., because of a threat of union disruptions to begin at that time.

Nass notes: In an article posted by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel at 3:58 p.m., reporter Jason Stein quoted Bruce Colburn of the Service Employees International Union State Council. Mr. Colburn made it clear that disruptive actions by protesters would commence when the committee attempted to enter into executive session to hold a vote at 7:00 p.m.

“We learned during the Act 10 chaos to take the union protesters at their word when making threats of disruption or actions to prevent the Legislature from voting,” Senator Nass said.

As Chairman, it is my duty to keep the legislative process moving forward and not to allow the protesters to take over the process of representing all of the people of this great state,” Nass said.

Meanwhile, In a Related Matter: The Executive Director of Wisconsin Business Alliance says she spent some time this week to phone some business leaders around the state to find out if they really do support the proposed Right To Work legislation.

“Since the State Chamber of Commerce, or WMC, is strongly supporting the legislation, I was curious to learn where local business associations stand on the issue,” WBA Executive Directdor Lori Compas wrote on the Wisconsin Business Alliance website.

“Specifically, I wanted to learn the answer to this question: Is WMC really representing Wisconsin’s broad and diverse business community when it claims that businesses want legislators to enact “right to work” laws”, she wrote.

“The answer was astonishing: I could not find a single Chamber in the districts of senators Fitzgerald, Cowles, Olsen, Moulton, Petrowski, Nass, Lasee, or Harsdorf that supports “right to work,” she continued.

She writes that what she did hear, were statements like: “We’re not taking a position on that.” “We don’t take a stand on political issues.” “We only advocate for political issues when there’s a strong consensus among our members, and we don’t have consensus on this.”

Compas reports that she was told by a Chamber official in Senator Fitzgerald’s district, “We won’t take a stand on that one way or another. We’re part of WMC because we get a lot of resources from them, like mentoring and executive training and other benefits, but that doesn’t mean we support their legislative agenda.”

She says in the Wisconsin Business Alliance artile on their website: Another Chamber official, this time in Senator Lasee’s district, said, “Everyone I have talked to says that it is an issue that should be left between employers and their employees. I haven’t found anyone who says we need the government to tell us how to run our business.”

The Wisconsin Business Alliance is a statewide organization for community-minded business owners and professionals. Their stated mission is to improve Wisconsin’s business climate while protecting the state’s quality of life. They are nonpartisan. However, the organization statements indicate they understand politics does affect businesses. WBA promotes policies that help businesses grow and protect Wisconsin quality of life. WTA Executive Director Lori Compas is a registered legislative lobbyist.

More information about Wisconsin Business Alliance can be found here: CLICK HERE


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