Best Course of Action is Inaction With Act 10 Ruling

Despite Dane County judge's ruling, Menomonee Falls School District is staying the course when it comes to state's collective bargaining law.

Once again, Gov. Scott Walker’s Act 10 is causing rumblings in Madison, but don’t expect to experience any aftershocks in Menomonee Falls as a result.

On Sept. 14, saying it violates the constitutional rights of workers. He claimed Act 10 creates separate classes of state workers who would be treated unequally and unfairly under the law. It also violated workers' rights to free speech and to assemble, the judge ruled.

The decision followed a suit filed by the Madison teachers union and a Milwaukee city employee union. Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen last week filed a motion to stay the latest decision about the collective bargaining law.

Questions immediately arose in school districts across the state attempting to assess the impact of the ruling. In Menomonee Falls, officials decided that the  best course of action is inaction.

Director of Human Resources Chrstiane Standlee said the district received legal advice to stay the course. Standlee said the court ruling pertains only to the Madison school district, and the parties listed in the suit. There’s also no legal or binding precedent to support Colas’ ruling.

“If we were to act upon this ruling in any way without precedent we could be in violation of Act 10,” Standlee said. “We are recommending we hold and stay the course.”

The School Board reached a two-year contract agreement with the teachers union in May 2011. The contract was signed before Act 10 was officially state law, but was inked to lock in savings while the new law remained ambiguous.

“Usually, we want to be proactive about these things, but will be reactive moving forward,” Standlee said. “There is some speculation that this could end up in the state Supreme Court.”


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