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Today’s Brew wants to know the political topics you’re following in 2019 + highlights the state-level legislation affecting public-sector unions  
The Daily Brew

Welcome to the Friday, June 21, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Ballotpedia’s Summer Camp is almost here
  2. Three states have passed public-sector union laws since Janus
  3. New York state holds local primaries next week

Ballotpedia’s Summer Camp is almost here

Where are you reading the Brew right now? Is it somewhere insta-worthy? What are your weekend or summer plans?

Post your photo on social media with the hashtag #BPSummerCamp to be entered to win Ballotpedia swag and be featured in the Brew.

We also want to hear what you think have been the biggest political stories so far this year—and what you think will grab the headlines in the second half of 2019.

We’ll feature submissions from you—our amazing readers—during Summer Camp week.

I look forward to hearing from you!

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Summer Camp


Three states have passed public-sector union laws since Janus

One year ago next week, the Supreme Court ruled in Janus v. AFSCME that public-sector unions cannot require non-members to pay agency fees to cover the costs of non-political union activities. This decision overturned the precedent established by the Court in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education in 1977.

Since then, three states enacted legislation regarding public-sector unions:

  • Delaware adopted a law making compensation a mandatory subject of collective bargaining for state employees.

    • The Senate approved the bill 19-1. The state House voted 38-2 in favor of the bill.

  • Nevada passed legislation providing for collective bargaining rights for state employees.

    • The measure passed the state House 28-13 with all Democrats voting in favor and all Republicans voting against. It was approved in the Senate by a straight party-line vote, 12 Democrats to 8 Republicans.

  • Washington enacted a law declaring that public employers and public-sector unions are not liable for claims involving agency fees paid to unions prior to Janus. It also repealed statutes requiring employees to join unions or pay dues as a condition of employment and amended the state’s laws regarding the method of authorizing deductions for dues.

    • The state Senate approved the bill 25-21, with all votes in favor coming from Democrats and 19 Republicans joining two Democrats voting against. The state House approved the bill 56-38, with 55 Democrats and one Republican voting in favor and all 38 Republicans opposed. 

State legislatures in Maine, New Hampshire, and Oregon have passed five measures that are awaiting gubernatorial action. So far this year, 31 state legislatures have considered 101 pieces of legislation regarding public-sector unions. 

You can read more about union-related state legislative activity in the year since the Janus decision in this week’s edition of our Union Station newsletter. Next week’s issue—which comes out Monday—will highlight court cases involving public-sector union policy.

We’ll be presenting a free, 30-minute webinar on the Janus decision on June 26. Topics include how the decision has affected unions across the country and how states have responded to the ruling.

New York state holds local primaries next week

New York holds statewide primaries for municipal and county offices and local judgeships on June 25 after enacting legislation earlier this year moving all primaries in the state to the fourth Tuesday in June. Ballotpedia is covering primaries in six jurisdictions in the New York City and Buffalo areas.

New York City will hold its second election this year for the District 45 seat on the city council. Incumbent Jumaane Williams (D) was elected New York City Public Advocate in a special election February 26.

The first general election for this seat—held May 14—determined who would hold the office until the end of 2019. Farah Louis (D) won that election with 42% of the vote in an eight-candidate field. The same eight candidates are also competing in the June 25 primary to become the Democratic nominee for the Nov. 5 general election. The winner of that race will serve the remainder of Williams’ term, which ends Dec. 31, 2021.

The counties of Bronx, Queens, and Richmond—also known as Staten Island—are holding primaries for county district attorney. The races in Bronx and Richmond counties each feature unopposed incumbents who advanced directly to the general election.

Seven candidates are running for the Democratic nomination to be the Queens County district attorney. Democratic presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren (D) and Bernie Sanders (D), along with current and former members of Congress, state executives, state legislators, and city officials have all endorsed various candidates in the race.

 

 




About the author

Dave Beaudoin

Dave Beaudoin is a project director at Ballotpedia and can be reached at dave.beaudoin@ballotpedia.org

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