Republicans in Oklahoma appear poised to remove some more of what little union protection there is in that deep red and right-to-work state. On Tuesday, the state Senate passed House Bill 1593, a bill that would strip away Oklahoma's requirement that large cities engage in collective bargaining with so-called "non-uniformed" city workers. The state House already passed the bill and now it just awaits the expected signature of first-term Republican Gov. Mary Fallin.
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The state's existing collective bargaining law, which was signed by Democratic Gov. Brad Henry seven years ago, requires big municipalities -- population 35,000 and up -- to bargain with, as the The Oklahoman reported, "city road, sanitation and utility workers."
In the new legislation, as in the controversial anti-collective bargaining bill in Wisconsin, workers like firemen and police offers are exempt. The Oklahoma bill also excludes teachers from the change.