Friday, March 25, 2011

Wisconsin Republicans Say Anti-Union Law in Effect

MADISON (Reuters) - Wisconsin Republicans said on Friday a bill stripping Wisconsin public employees of most of their collective bargaining rights was in effect after it was published by a legislative agency despite a judge's order against publication.

The move looked certain to stir fresh controversy over the tactics used in efforts to implement and block the measure, which in recent weeks sparked massive demonstrations and brought national attention to Wisconsin.

Republican supporters of the bill said the judge's temporary restraining order (TRO) on publication had not applied to the Legislative Reference Bureau (LRB), which published the legislation, Wisconsin Act 10, electronically on Friday.

Legal publication of the legislation is required for it to go into effect.

The restraining order was issued last week by a judge hearing a complaint filed by the Dane County District Attorney against several Republican legislators who orchestrated the law's passage two weeks ago.

Scott Fitzgerald, the head of the GOP-controlled Senate, said the LRB's action made the bill "the law" and insisted the action did not violate the TRO because it did not mention the bureau specifically.

"If the DA didn't want the Legislative Reference Bureau to publish, then the DA should have made sure that they were part of the restraining order."
Read the rest here.

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