Kentucky, or at least several counties in Kentucky, looks to join the ranks of economic freedom lovers that respect real employee fairness by becoming Right to Work.
According to the Heritage Foundation’s James Sherk in the National Review,
“The momentum for right-to-work measures at the local level across the country might be gaining steam: Kentucky’s Warren County, which includes the city of Bowling Green, just passed a local right-to-work ordinance. A 5–1 bipartisan majority of the county legislature voted to make union dues voluntary for private-sector workers.
The measure comes up for a second and final reading next week. If it passes, then unions will lose the ability to compel workers in Warren County (home to a sizeable GM plant) to pay union dues — at least until the inevitable court challenge.”
Although there are lingering legal questions as to whether Kentucky counties can pass local right to work laws, Sherk makes a compelling case they can and that it represents an exciting new trend. According to media accounts, Simpson County, Kentucky, will consider a similar local ordinance this week.
These local governments are making a major statement that they are not going to wait for the Kentucky legislature to act. Rather, they are going to make their counties as free and fair as possible, doing so immediately. Should this prove successful in Kentucky, it would represent a model worthy of emulation. With discussions beginning in the Kentucky legislature over a statewide Right-to-Work law in 2015 and rumblings in Wisconsin over a similar effort, 2015 could easily become a banner year for economic freedom and employee fairness.
The question for Ohio is whether it will follow suit or remain stuck in neutral while all of its neighbors pass it by. If so, it will find itself in a lonely position as one of the least free and fair states in the Midwest.