Wisconsin governor cancels layoffs after union vote

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 22, 2011 11:17 AM

MADISON, Wis (Reuters) - Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said on Friday he was canceling the layoff warning notices he sent late last week to public sector unions after lawmakers approved his proposal to restrict the collective bargaining rights of those unions.

Walker said the new powers for state and local government in the bill, which he is expected to sign into law as early as Friday, would save $30 million in the current budget year, which ends June 30. The measure also requires that public servants pay more of their health insurance and pension costs.

"While tough budget choices certainly still lie ahead, both state and local units of government will not have to do any mass layoffs or direct service reductions because of the reforms contained in the budget repair bill," Walker said in a statement.

(Reporting by James B. Kelleher)