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Senate Bill 1259 — Bargaining, secret ballots

Senate Bill 1259 — Bargaining, secret ballots

Parrish Miller
February 5, 2024

Bill Description: Senate Bill 1259 would protect employee privacy during unionization elections by protecting the right to vote by secret ballot. 

Rating: +1

Does it violate the spirit or the letter of either the U.S. Constitution or the Idaho Constitution? Examples include restrictions on speech, public assembly, the press, privacy, private property, or firearms. Conversely, does it restore or uphold the protections guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution or the Idaho Constitution?

Senate Bill 1259 would amend Section 72-1382, Idaho Code, which deals with the process for forming a labor union. This bill would change the current language that says the process "may" use a secret ballot to say it “shall.” 

It would also clarify that the ballot "shall permit a vote against representation by anyone named on the ballot."

The bill adds a new subsection that reads, "Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, where collective bargaining is provided for under state law or where permissible if the employer chooses to bargain, the director, any board of trustees of a school district, or any other employer may not recognize, certify, or collectively bargain with a representative of employees in a bargaining unit unless such employees have voted in favor of such representative in a secret ballot election administered by the director pursuant to this section or in a comparable secret ballot election otherwise provided for or administered by the board of trustees of a school district or any other employer."

This provision should ensure that any attempt to unionize will require a uniform and private process that protects the rights and privacy of all employees.


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