Politics & Government
11:54 am
Thu March 21, 2013

Washtenaw County approves 10-year union contract ahead of right-to-work

Add Washtenaw County to the list of public schools, universities, and governments approving new union contracts ahead of the March 28 right-to-work deadline.

AnnArbor.com's Amy Biolchini has more on the contracts approved last night:

In an unprecedented chain of events, the Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners approved 10-year-long contracts with five of its unions Wednesday night one week before Michigan's new right-to-work law takes effect.

In exchange for the extended time frame, the unions agreed to changes in employee contributions to retirement and health care benefits for workers hired in 2014.

Biolchini reports the new contracts include wage increases and reductions in 'legacy costs' for the county. 

The 10-year contracts keep in place the requirement that employees pay union dues or fees as a condition of their employment with the county.

Such terms would be illegal after Michigan's right-to-work law goes into effect next week.

The Legislature is thinking of punishing some state universities that negotiate contracts they see as circumventing the new law.

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