Hundreds of Police & Firefighters Swarm Massachusetts Statehouse Over Bargaining Bill


Following Massachusetts Democrats’ vote on Tuesday to strip collective bargaining over health care from municipal unions, things got a little testy in Boston on Wednesday.

Hundreds of police and firefighters from across the state swarmed around the entrance to the House Chamber at the Statehouse today, cheering lawmakers who opposed a budget amendment that would strip municipal unions of bargaining rights over health care, and complaining to those who backed the measure.

Having lost a battle in the House late last night to stop the so-called “plan design” authorization to allow cities and towns to unilaterally change health insurance coverage, co-payments and deductibles, union leaders said they would now carry the fight to the Senate.

Worcester City Manager Michael V. OBrien said today if the House legislation — given initial approval as part of the state budget bill on a 111-42 vote — is adopted, the city could avoid as many as 131 layoffs this year with savings of about $5 million.

You know unions have overstayed their welcome when not even their own bought-and-paid-for party supports them any more.

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