The path and state of the collective bargaining bill took another turn today when the Legislative Reference Bureau published the contentious bill on its website. The bill was published by the LRB, and not the Secretary of State Doug La Follette who is prohibited from doing so after Judge Maryann Sumi handed down a restraining order against the bill’s publication. The issue is now whether or not the bill will take effect on Saturday.
Republican lawmakers are contending that with the LRB’s publishing of the bill the law will indeed take effect. However, pro-union supporters and Democrats are stating that the bill will only come into effect once the bill is published in the Wisconsin State Journal by the Secretary of State who is currently prohibited from doing so. The law is now in a constitutional gray area. The LRB has stated that the decision was merely administrative and that the law can’t take effect until published in the State Journal.
The LRB’s publication of the new collective bargaining law has sparked a new series of injunctions against the bill. Dane County DA Ismael Ozanne filed a new restraining order against the bill bringing the total number of current lawsuits against the bill to three. Two by Ozanne who also has a case against the merits of the bill, and one by the Madison firefighters and public works union. The initial restraining order handed down by Judge Sumi is also being appealed by the State’s attorneys to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. The Court has yet to decide whether or not to hear the appeal.