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Pennsylvania Supreme Court reinstates suit challenging school funding

Pennsylvania Supreme Court reinstates suit challenging school funding

Now that Neil Gorsuch has reestablished the conservative majority on the Court, there is little doubt that last year's 4-4 deadlock in the California case will become a 5-4 majority in Janus, overruling the 1977 decision and liberating state and local employees from the inconvenience of helping to defray costs associated with obtaining the wages, benefits, and workplace protections they enjoy. The defendant in the case is the American Federation of State, Council and Municipal Employees Council 31.

The Chicago Suntimes reports that the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to address the issue in an IL case by Mark Janus, a child-support specialist who alleges forcing him to pay union fees violates the Constitution.

Janus and two other state employees who object to the union fees had intervened in a lawsuit brought by Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner, a Republican who has sought by legislative and legal means to upend the status quo in public employment in the state, as has occurred in nearby states such as MI and Wisconsin.

In their appeal to the Supreme Court, the two groups backing Janus argue that his case would make a good vehicle for the Supreme Court to use to finally put Abood to rest.

Half the states, including MI, have enacted right-to-work laws that say employees don't have to join a union or pay agency fees. Oral arguments were held in January, but the death of conservative hardliner Antonin Scalia in February left SCOTUS deadlocked.

And if this case unfolds as expected, the widespread conservative belief that Donald Trump's impact on the federal courts outweighs numerous less fortunate aspects of his presidency will gain strength.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has revived a lawsuit that contends the state is failing in its obligation to adequately fund public schools.

Conservatives across America who now are being forced to pay dues to their employer's unions to fund the left-leaning activities of their organized labor leaders - even speech with which they decidedly disagree - are getting another chance to escape that burden.

Gettleman dismissed the workers' complaint in 2016, and the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld his decision in March. The same constitutional analysis would seem to apply to both public and private sector unions whenever the government forces anti-union employees to pay union fees. "About half of the states have laws covering so-called "fair share" fees that cover bargaining costs for non-members".

At that time, nine California teachers challenged the requirement because they object to paying for what they call the political side of the collective bargaining work. In Abood vs Detroit Board of Education, the Court ruled the fees were constitutional as long they weren't used for political or ideological activities. In those states, unions still represent workers but membership rates are lower.

The conservative-majority Supreme Court has signaled dissatisfaction with the Abood ruling in two prior cases in recent years.


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