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Judge halts pay for police officers doing union work (access required)

In its fight to curb the influence of public unions, the Goldwater Institute has persuaded a judge to temporarily block Phoenix’s practice of paying police officers to perform union work.

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Katherine Cooper ruled today that the practice known as “release time” likely violates the Arizona Constitution’s “gift clause,” which prohibits government from donating to private entities.

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Anti-union bills being parceled out to gain success (access required)

Backers of anti-union bills are planning to parcel out the provisions of a measure that is advancing in the Senate, an apparent move to give each idea the best chance of passing. The Senate Appropriations Committee on Tuesday approved an amendment to prohibit pay to public employees who do union activities, a practice called “release time.”

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Law enforcement not the place for political ideology

Most people would agree that the world of law enforcement is not the place for strident political agendas. So when an ideological organization whose lobbying activities are being challenged by the secretary of state starts pushing for changes that affect front line police officers, the law enforcement community stands up and takes notice.

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Anti-union bills expose lack of worker solidarity

While the slew of measures targeting public unions appeared to have re-energized organized labor in Arizona, it also exposed their inability to fully unite amid a sustained attack from foes. The discord over tactics was palpable on March 1, when hundreds of union members and their supporters protested at the state Capitol, but many public unions stayed away.

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Unions planning big rally at state Capitol (access required)

Unions from across Arizona are planning to bring hundreds of workers to the state Capitol on Thursday, two days after the Senate advanced a second bill that targets public unions.

They also want to send a clear message that they’re opposing Gov. Jan Brewer’s proposal to overhaul the state personnel system and make it easier to hire and fire workers.

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Senate likely to vote on anti-union measures this week

This week, the Senate is likely to vote on a slew of proposals that would fundamentally weaken public employee unions in Arizona. The proposals have quickly advanced since their introduction about two weeks ago and there are indications they will be brought to the Senate floor for a debate soon.

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