Labor stronghold Ohio took center stage last week in the fight over collective bargaining for public workers, as the state legislature passed a bill that was in some ways tougher than Wisconsin’s new law.
The Ohio measure, signed by Republican Gov. John Kasich, allows unions to negotiate wages but not health care, sick time, or pension benefits. It gets rid of automatic pay increases and replaces them with merit raises or performance pay.
Gov. Kasich has said that his $55.5 billion, two-year state budget counts on unspecified savings from lifting union protections to fill an $8 billion hole.
Democrats, including former Gov. Ted Strickland, and unions have vowed to mount a campaign to overturn the measure through a referendum in November.
A version of this article appeared in the April 06, 2011 edition of Education Week as Ohio Moves to Restrict Collective Bargaining