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Collective Bargaining for Counties Bill Set for Third and Final Reading

(Denver, CO) -- Eleven days after it was first introduced, Senate Bill 230 is set for its last action before passing to be sent to the Governor's desk. County government officials have been concerned the bill, which would allow workers to unionize. Otero County went on record at a regularly scheduled meeting to say their employees already have the ability to collectively bargain if they wish. Passage of the bill into law could mean extra costs to counties and could lead to cuts with staffing and services provided to the community, according to county commissioners in opposition.

Prowers county commissioner Wendy Buxton Andrade testified Friday in committee that the bill would hurt her county. She says the county has given raises to employees. Buxton Andrade adds that the relationship with their workers is very good and doesn't see a need for the bill. She says they are facing estimated costs to their small county of just around 11,000 people to the possible amount of $400,000 in union dues.

"Because the state of Colorado and the counties are not for sale, and we will not be sold to any entity. Our people, we deserve better than this. If If our employees want to unionize, they have that right. This Bill is unnecessary and unwarranted and is dirty politics." Buxton Andrade said as she closed her testimony to the committee.

Colorado Counties Incorporated, CCI, which is a group of county commissioners who watch bills deemed both good and bad for their counties, has come out opposing the bill.

Baca, Bent, Crowley, Kiowa, Otero and Prowers are on the list of counties believing the bill to be bad for their counties.

Sponsors on the bill state they believe the bill would help the little guy have more power and would keep workers with county governments healthy and safe.

The bill passed out of committee and is scheduled for a third and final reading Monday on the House floor. It's the last stop for the bill. Should it pass, it will head to Governor Jared Polis for his signature.


~Anne Boswell,

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