Collective Bargaining Bill to Increase Costs for Counties and Students

MACo Policy Associate Drew Jabin today testified before the House Appropriations Committee to oppose HB 894 Education – Community Colleges – Collective Bargaining. This bill creates a statewide collective bargaining process for community college employees.

From the MACo Testimony:

The move to collective bargaining outlined in this bill could create potentially unsustainable costs for counties, who provide substantial funding for community colleges throughout Maryland—especially since the legislation does not envision any added State support. Moreover, this bill will lead to increased tuition costs at a time when training and education opportunities are most needed.

In addition, despite counties’ role in supporting community colleges, this legislation would not provide any opportunity for county governments to participate in collective bargaining negotiations. The combination of these effects – State-imposed system and costs, no county participation in bargaining, and no additional State funding – is simply not affordable as a statewide county mandate and could present substantial budget difficulties.

Current state laws include distinct collective bargaining processes for community colleges in several jurisdictions. Several colleges already have some locally-authorized collective bargaining. This bill allows for collective bargaining contracts at those colleges to continue only until they expire. After that point, the existing systems must be repealed and substituted for the far more detailed and restrictive collective bargaining process required by HB 894.

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2021 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database.

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