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Members of 13 bargaining units vote to keep union ties

Published: Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017 10:26 a.m. CDT

DES MOINES — Members of 13 teacher bargaining units have voted to maintain their union affiliations under Iowa’s new collective bargaining laws. Iowa Public Employment Relations Board staff counted the votes Tuesday. Of the nearly 1,300 eligible voters, more than 1,100 voted to maintain their units. The new collective bargaining laws require public-sector unions to recertify every time they face a new contract negotiation. Previously they held elections if one of their members petitioned for decertification.

Republicans say the new laws give local governments more budget flexibility and ensure that unions are held accountable to all their members. Labor leaders say the new laws are designed to reduce the number of unions and weaken their influence.

All of Iowa’s 1,200 public bargaining units will face recertification elections.