City workers express support for collective bargaining law

Tuesday, January 25th 2005, 11:08 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Oklahoma municipal workers converged at the state Capitol Tuesday to support a collective bargaining law that was declared unconstitutional by a state judge.

Members of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees criticized the January 12th ruling by Oklahoma County District Judge Daniel Owens as well as politicians who've filed bills in the Oklahoma Legislature to repeal the law.

The Oklahoma Municipal Employees Collective Bargaining Act requires cities with populations greater than 35,000 to collectively bargain with municipal employees.

The statute affected about a dozen cities across the state. Existing law already allowed city police and firefighters to form unions.

Owens said the law was invalid because it discriminates against workers in smaller communities.

AFSCME spokesman Blaine Rummel said the union plans to appeal the ruling.