State Shouldn’t Meddle in Local Public Safety

February 01, 2013

It’s rare that the liberal mayor of Boulder and conservative mayor of Colorado Springs strongly agree on something. When they do, we need to take notice.

What the two agree on is that Senate Bill-25 — a bill that would grant collective bargaining rights for firefighters in those and other cities across the state — is a one-size-fits-all mandate that will place cities in a fiscal bind and usurp local control on a critically-important issue in which the state shouldn’t meddle. What municipal governments choose to pay firefighters, and how they choose to negotiate with them, has always been a matter of local control in Colorado. There’s no compelling reason to change that now. This is just a muscle-flexing exercise by big labor interests, who want to take advantage of one-party rule in Colorado. Forced unionization of firefighters not only threatens to degrade the performance and capabilities of our critically-important first responders, but it could place huge new strains on local budgets that we just can’t afford.

But SB-25 is expected to be debated and voted-on by the state senate Monday, which means fast action is needed! Please contact your state senator, listed below, and share your views with them on this critical issue. Please act now, because a critical vote is expected Monday.

There’s no question our first responders perform dangerous and valuable work. All Americans appreciate that, and we want to compensate them fairly for the important work they do. But many argue, convincingly, that these functions are just too important to be done according to union shop rules. Would you really trust somebody with a postal clerk’s work habits to pull you from a burning building? Decisions to unionize or not unionize are something for local elected officials to make, through discussion and consultation with their own employees. It’s an abuse of power for the state to be influencing such negotiations one way or another.

The last time a bill like this got through the Statehouse, it took the veto pen of a Democrat, then Gov. Bill Ritter, to defend the interests of local government against this power-grab by big labor. And we would hope Gov. John Hickenlooper would take the same action, though he’s taken no official position on the bill. Let’s hope legislators show more respect for local government control by killing this bill before it lands on the governor’s desk.

Take action now, by contacting your senators at the numbers below about this wrong-headed bill. A few minutes of your time can make a big difference in whether this misguided piece of legislation survives.

State Senators are:


Last Name First Name Phone Number Email
Brophy Greg 303.866.6360
Grantham Kevin 303.866.4877
Giron Angela 303.866.4878
Scheffel Mark 303.866.4869
Schwartz Gail 303.866.4871
Roberts Ellen 303.866.4884
King Steve 303.866.3077
Baumgardner Randy 303.866.5292
Lambert Kent 303.866.4835
Hill Owen 303.866.2737
Morse John 303.866.6364
Cadman Bill 303.866.4880
Renfroe Scott 303.866.4451
Hill Owen 303.866.4841
Lundberg Kevin 303.866.4853
Nicholson Jeanne 303.866.4873
Jones Matt 303.866.5291
Heath Rollie 303.866.4872
Hudak Evie 303.866.4840
Jahn Cheri 303.866.4856
Ulibarri Jesse 303.866.4857
Kerr Andy 303.866.4859
Marble Vicki 303.866.4876
Tochtrop Lois 303.866.4863
Hodge Mary 303.866.4855
Newell Linda 303.866.4846
Balmer David 303.866.4883
Todd Nancy 303.866.3342
Carroll Morgan 303.866.4879
Harvey Ted 303.866.4881
Steadman Pat 303.866.4861
Aguilar Irene 303.866.4852
Johnston Michael 303.866.4864
Guzman Lucia 303.866.4862
Crowder Larry 303.866.4875


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