Education A State Capitals Roundup

Court Overturns Law on Idaho Union Dues

By Vaishali Honawar — December 13, 2005 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

A federal judge has ruled unconstitutional an Idaho law that bars automatic deductions from state workers’ paychecks for union political activity, handing a major victory to the Idaho Education Association, which was a party to the lawsuit.

The state’s Voluntary Contribution Act, passed in 2003, required unions to get written permission from members to use any of the dues they collected through automatic deductions for political activities.

But U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill, in Boise, said in a decision made public Nov. 30 that the automatic deductions could stay in place if the union agrees to cover the costs.

Sherri Wood, the president of the 11,900-member Idaho Education Association, pointed out that membership in the union is voluntary. “Idaho is a right-to-work state,” she said, adding that members can ask for refunds of the portion of their dues spent on political activities.

But Sen. Brad Little, a Republican who strongly supports the law, said he would study the ruling carefully to consider ways to fight it. He maintained that union members have no control over which political candidates their unions support, or which activities they fund.

“I want to make the hurdle [for automatic deductions] a little higher,” he said.

Events

Jobs Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
Science of Reading: Emphasis on Language Comprehension
Dive into language comprehension through a breakdown of the Science of Reading with an interactive demonstration.
Content provided by Be GLAD
English-Language Learners Webinar English Learners and the Science of Reading: What Works in the Classroom
ELs & emergent bilinguals deserve the best reading instruction! The Reading League & NCEL join forces on best practices. Learn more in our webinar with both organizations.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: February 7, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: January 31, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education Briefly Stated: January 17, 2024
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read
Education In Their Own Words The Stories That Stuck With Us, 2023 Edition
Our newsroom selected five stories as among the highlights of our work. Here's why.
4 min read
102523 IMSE Reading BS
Adria Malcolm for Education Week