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Education

Governor Supports End of Collective Bargaining for Public University Faculty

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Governor Noem supports a bill prohibiting collective bargaining for faculty at the state’s six public universities. Senate Bill 147 is on its way to her desk as one of two related bills that surfaced this session.

The governor agrees with proponents who say eliminating collective bargaining will offer greater flexibility for university hiring practices.

“I think it is a good move that will help our universities be nimble in changing environments and allow us an opportunity to give them the flexibility to have the right people in the right places to create and educate our workforce,” Noem says.

The morning after its final passage, a Senate committee amended the House version of the bill to read simply, “Education in South Dakota is hereby enhanced.”

Opponents say removing collective bargaining will negatively impact faculty recruitment and retention. They add non-union members also benefit from the negotiated contract.

Less than 10% of faculty are dues-paying members of the Council of Higher Education union.