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Employers can impose terms despite ruling

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Wisconsin union leaders scored a victory when a Madison judge re-affirmed portions of Gov. Scott Walker collective bargaining restrictions are unconstitutional, but the ruling doesn’t give unions any leverage to force concessions from employers.

Judge Juan Colas found state labor relations officials in contempt Monday for continuing to enforce provisions in the restrictions he ruled were invalid last year. The ruling means school districts and municipal employers must resume negotiations with unions that request it.

However, the ruling doesn’t give unions the power to force employers into binding arbitration and public worker unions can’t legally strike in Wisconsin. That means employers can still dictate contract terms.

The state Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments in the case next month. Conservative justices control the court and could restore the provisions.

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