Fire Fighters Defeat Anti-Binding Arbitration
18, 2014 – Collective bargaining for fire fighters remains safe thanks to the
quick actions by the Federated Fire Fighters of Wyoming (FFFWY).
Wyoming state legislature, while in the middle of a 20-day budget session,
introduced HB 142, which, if passed, would have eliminated binding arbitration
for fire fighters.
members are the only public employees in the state who have collective
bargaining, so we have to be prepared to be on the defensive,” says FFFWY
President Joe Fender. “With assistance from the IAFF, the Wyoming state AFL-CIO
and other labor groups, we were able to kill this legislation quickly.”
budget session, a bill unrelated to the budget needs a two-thirds majority vote
to be heard. Wyoming fire fighters needed to secure 21 “nay” votes to kill it –
and got 28.
support of state Representative Lee Filer (D) was crucial to stopping the bill.
If HB 142 had secured enough votes to be heard, it would have gone to the House
Labor, Health and Social Service Committee where Filer is a member. Filer
secured enough committee votes against HB 142 to prevent it from to the House
floor for consideration. This was enough to convince even one of the bill’s
co-sponsors (also the committee chair) to be one of the “nay” votes.
On the day
of the vote, 20 FFFWY members became a convincing presence in the state House as
Representative Glenn Moniz, a retired member of Laramie Local 946, spoke in
favor of voting down the bill.