9/4/08

Denver Post sows opposition to worker-choice

More worker-choice stories: here

Forced-labor unionists have a mighty megaphone

The Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce's political-issues committee raised nearly $1.1 million during the most recent reporting period, according to secretary of state filings. The chamber's group, called Coloradans for Responsible Reform, has raised $1.6 million to fight four union-backed initiatives headed for the November ballot. Hospital giant HCA Inc. contributed $250,000 during the period from July 31 to Aug. 27.

Meanwhile, the group pushing two of the four labor initiatives raised $570,000, taking its total to $3.1 million. The group, called Protect Colorado's Future, received $200,000 from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers during the period.

Protect Colorado's Future is behind Amendment 53, which seeks to hold executives criminally liable under state law for corporate wrongdoings, and Amendment 55, which would require businesses to give reasons for firing workers.

The group also is fighting three business-backed measures, including Amendment 47, which seeks to amend the state constitution to say that union membership and the payment of dues or fees could not be mandated as a condition of employment.

Amendment 47 backers raised $15,045, taking their total to $571,000. Archstone Communities contributed $15,000 to the group, called A Better Colorado.

Another business-backed group, Defend Our Economy, raised $26,600. The Bickel Family Foundation contributed $15,000. Defend Our Economy, which will fight the labor measures and support Amendment 47, has garnered $62,200.

The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7 union's issues committee didn't raise any new funds. The group, Coloradans for Middle Class Relief, is leading Amendment 56, which would mandate businesses with 20 or more employees to provide health-care coverage, and Amendment 57, which would allow injured employees to seek damages outside the workers' compensation system. The group has raised $1.6 million, all from the UFCW.

(denverpost.com)

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