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Kansas House panel passes strict reform to school wage talks

Associated Press - February 21, 2015 4:28 pm

Kansas school boards would have the power to tell teachers “take it or leave it” in salary negotiations under a bill endorsed by a state House panel.

The House Commerce, Labor and Economic Development Committee approved the bill Friday, sending it to the House floor for further debate.

The bill would allow individual teachers to negotiate outside of the normal collective bargaining structure and also would give school boards the ability to refuse to negotiate with any teachers’ group.

Republican Rep. Marvin Kleeb of Overland Park said school boards would be unlikely to issue ultimatums, and the bill would be beneficial to the state’s best teachers.

But Mark Desetti, a lobbyist for the state’s largest teacher’s union, said the bill was designed to make it easier to cut teachers’ salaries.

City of Salina