Right to work passes the Oklahoma House

Wednesday, April 18th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

(Oklahoma City - AP) -- Right-to-work proposal passes Oklahoma House of Representatives.

Supporters argue the measure is necessary for the state's economic growth. They say many companies don't consider Oklahoma because there is no right-to-work law.

The bill has passed the Senate and calls for a statewide vote on whether state law should prohibit contracts requiring workers to pay union dues as condition of employment.

A special election provision that would have set the right-to-work election for Aug. 14 failed to get the necessary two-thirds majority. That means the election will be held in November 2002.

Under the resolution, Oklahoma voters will be asked whether the state should have a law prohibiting labor contracts that require employees of a company to pay union dues.

The bill, Senate Joint Resolution 1, was written by Sen. Dave Herbert, D-Midwest City, and Rep. Jack Begley, D-Goodwell.

Supporters argued the bill was necessary for the state's growth, saying many companies do not consider locating in the state because it does not have a right-to-work law.

Rep. Hopper Smith, R-Tulsa, said the plan will ``enhance worker rights _ the right to choose.''

``The time is not only only right for right-to-work, it is the right thing to do,'' said Rep. Mike Wilt, R-Bartlesville.