Act 10 and the General Election: How Will Voters be Affected?

Aug 8, 2014

How will Wisconsin's Act 10 affect voters in the November election?
Credit Vox Efx, flickr

Wisconsin’s primary elections are next Tuesday.  But it will be the general election in November that many believe will effectively be a referendum, another one, on the course Scott Walker has set as governor of Wisconsin.

In particular, it will give people in Wisconsin an opportunity to weigh in on one of the governor’s signature pieces of legislation; Act 10, which was passed amid a firestorm of controversy months after Walker took office.  It greatly scaled back collective bargaining rights for many public employees in the state, and required them to pay increased costs for health coverage and pension benefits. 

At the same time, those employee concessions were said to give public entities, such as cities, counties, and school districts greater budget flexibility.

Writer Erik Gunn explores the impact of Act 10 after three years in his article found in the current issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

"It’s been more adversarial," says Gunn. "Not intentionally, but because any time the administration might want to make a change, there’s an immediate pushback. 'Well, you’re only doing this because you can, because you don’t have to negotiate it.'"