AFSCME Iowa Council 61 v. State

928 N.W.2d 21 (2019)

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AFSCME Iowa Council 61 v. State

Iowa Supreme Court
928 N.W.2d 21 (2019)

Facts

In 2017, the Iowa legislature amended the Public Employment Relations Act to eliminate payroll deductions for union dues and narrow the scope of topics subject to mandatory collective bargaining for some units. Before the amendments, there had not been a strike among state public employees since the act passed in 1974. Under the amendments, unions with membership comprised of 30 percent or more public-safety employees (PSEs) had broad authority to exercise bargaining rights on behalf of members, including those who were not PSEs, whereas unions that did not meet the 30-percent threshold had limited bargaining rights, including on behalf of PSEs. Among the changes, previously mandatory bargaining topics such as base wages and overtime pay were converted to permissive bargaining topics for unions under the 30-percent threshold. Most police and fire fighters as well as conservation officers were designated as PSEs, but corrections officers were not. Iowa Council 61 of the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) (plaintiffs) challenged the amendments under the equal-protection clause of the Iowa Constitution. The district court granted the state’s (defendant) motion to dismiss, and the AFSCME appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Waterman, J.)

Dissent (Apel, J.)

Dissent (Cady, C.J.)

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