The measure would require binding mediation if unions and farmers can’t reach a collective bargaining agreement – and give the Agriculture Labor Relations Board the power to enforce a mediator’s decision.
Democratic Assemblyman Adam Gray (D-Modesto) says the proposal wouldn’t tilt the playing field unfairly in either direction. “This bill is about finding agreement should negotiations break down through a fair process and upholding the integrity of collective bargaining,” he says.
But growers fear the measure would stack the deck against them – and mounted a heavy lobbying effort against it. Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway (R-Tulare) says she’s worried about the measure’s unintended consequences. “Why would you ever negotiate with an employer when you can get an amenable mediator to impose a contract?” she says.
The bill now goes back to the Senate for a final vote. If approved, it would move to Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.
Follow us for more stories like this
CapRadio provides a trusted source of news because of you. As a nonprofit organization, donations from people like you sustain the journalism that allows us to discover stories that are important to our audience. If you believe in what we do and support our mission, please donate today.