Right-to-Work bills terminated

February 11, 2020

HB 153 (Carter) would have repealed the sections of the Code of Virginia prohibiting agreements between an employer and labor organization from requiring non-union employees to join a labor organization as a condition of employment. Known colloquially as “right-to-work,” 27 states including Virginia currently allow worker choice regarding union membership by prohibiting or limiting such agreements. According to concerns raised by the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) in state’s fiscal impact statement for the bill, passage of the bill would have resulted in a loss of economic development projects and general fund revenues to the Commonwealth. The bill reported from the House Labor and Commerce Committee, 12-9, on February 6 but was left in the House Appropriations Committee.

In the Senate, SB 426 (Saslaw) would have authorized an employer to require employees as a condition of employment to pay a “fair share fee” to a labor organization engaged in collective bargaining with the employer. VEDP raised similar concerns in the state’s fiscal impact statement as they did in HB 153. The Senate Commerce and Labor Committee passed the bill by indefinitely, 12-3, but also established a special subcommittee to examine the issue further.

VACo Contact: Jeremy R. Bennett

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