Governor Finds State Employee Paycheck Deduction Unconstitutional



·        Under the law up until this week, State employees who do not want to join a labor union have been
required to have monies deducted from their paychecks anyway in each pay period.  The monies so deducted are pad over to the union.  Called a
      “fair share” deduction, the subtraction is described as providing recompense to the union for providing representation to the non-member State worker.  On Monday, February 9, Gov. Rauner issued Executive Order 1513 (http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/BillStatus.asp?DocNum=1513&GAID=13&DocTypeID=EO&LegId=86710&SessionID=88&GA=99).   The new order, if it clears legal challenges, could authorize State workers to ask that these deductions be cancelled.  Current employee logs show that approximately 6,500 State workers are in “fair share” status – they are not members of the unions that have organized their workplaces, but are subject to mandatory paycheck deductions under the practice in place prior to EO 1513. 

Rauner’s finding follows recent federal Supreme Court case law.  In a decision involving a family provider of home health care, the nation’s highest court found in the decision “Harris v. Quinn” that a major union (SEIU) had no right to force the family provider to pay dues-like fair share payments to the union for services not chosen by the person paying the dues.  Executive Order 1513 seeks to apply this principle (http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2015/02/10/illinois-gov-rauner-strikes-blow-against-public-sector-unions-ends-forced-dues/) across the State’s workforce.  “These forced union dues are a critical cog,” asserted the Governor, “in the corrupt bargain that is crushing taxpayers.” 

Nothing in the executive order prevents state employees who value their union membership from continuing to belong to the union as dues-paying members.  The order is expected to be challenged in the General Assembly, challenged by litigation, or fought through both pathways. Implementation of the order has been stayed pending resolution of the issue.