AK: Looming Conflict with Labor Unions Over Healthcare
The recent labor law re-write in Anchorage has gotten a lot of press. According to the ADN:
The new law eliminates the power of city government unions to strike or have binding arbitration, forbids performance bonuses or incentives in future contracts and limits raises to a maximum of 1 percent over the five-year average of Anchorage’s inflation rate. It calls for standard health benefits across unions.
The administration kept its proposal secret until the Friday before it was to be introduced, Feb. 8, which was also the deadline for Assembly candidates to file to run in the April 2 city election. Most Assembly members didn’t know it was coming, nor did union leaders.
The process by which the law was passed probably irked more than the actual content of the law, according to folks with which I’ve spoken.
In Juneau, another issue related to organized labor seemed to catch a number of folks off guard.
Instead, it would move all of those health benefits away from local districts and to the Department of Administration. The benefits would be part of one large self-insured (or fully insured) pool with other public employees.