Jefferson City – Missouri workers came under attack again Monday as the House Workforce Standards and Development Committee sent a paycheck deception bill and an anti-prevailing wage bill to the full House.
The vote on both measures occurred after the Labor Tribune's print deadline for this week's edition.
HB 1891, the paycheck deception measure sponsored by Rep. Holly Rehder (R-Sikeston), would require annual written permission from members of public employee unions before dues or other fees could be deducted from their paychecks, resulting in increased record keeping costs for unions and union employers under the guise of protecting workers by making it easier for them to stop paying union dues or agency fees. The measure would not apply to first responders.
The bill brings to mind what former Speaker of the House Tim Jones said about paycheck deception, that it’s just another way to “skin the cat” and get the the "ultimate goal of right-to-work.”
“Paycheck Deception is completely unnecessary,” said Mike Louis, president of the Missouri AFL-CIO. “Today’s committee vote is only the latest blatant corporate power grab at the expense of Missouri’s middle class. “Working Missourians are counting on their elected officials on both sides of the aisle to choose their constituents instead of pandering to the millionaires and billionaires trying to rewrite our state’s laws in their favor at the expense of everyone else.”
The anti-prevailing wage bill, HB 1700, sponsored by Rep. Bill Lant (R-Pineville), opens the door for out-of-town contractors to bid on projects paid for by Missouri tax dollars.
“These contractors would send our tax dollars out-of-state and use out-of-state workers, paying them less than what Missouri workers earn and deserve,” Louis said.
The vote on both measures comes a year after the Republican-controlled Legislature sent a so-called right-to-work (RTW) bill to Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon. The governor vetoed the RTW bill, which would have prohibited requiring union membership as a negotiated condition of employment. The General Assembly failed to override his veto.