Missouri Union Bosses’ Kentucky Problem


Immediate Right to Work Implementation Sparks a Boom Next Door

Early this year, Kentucky and Missouri respectively became the 27th and 28th states to adopt Right to Work laws.

But what they have experienced since with regard to labor policy is not at all the same.

The Bluegrass State Right to Work law took effect in early January and has remained in effect ever since.

A union boss-instigated lawsuit to overturn the statute has yet to be heard in court.

The Show-Me State Right to Work law, in contrast, has yet to take effect.

Union bosses were able to use a quirk in the Missouri legal code to block implementation by gathering petitions from slightly more than a fifth as many citizens as voted for the state’s pro-Right to Work governor in November 2016.

Brightening Economic Outlook In Kentucky Will Undercut Big Labor Rhetoric in Missouri

The Big Labor petition drive also put on the November 2018 ballot a measure to strangle Missouri’s Right to Work law in the cradle.

National Right to Work Committee Vice President Matthew Leen commented:

“Top union bosses have already launched a multi-million-dollar campaign, funded largely by forced dues and fees from employees outside of Missouri, to overturn the results of the 2016 elections and perpetuate their forced-dues privileges.

“They know the Right to Work law they oppose is overwhelmingly popular, so they will be aiming throughout this campaign to confuse voters about what the law really does.

“And, judging by what union bosses have done again and again during similar ballot campaigns in the past, one key component of the Big Labor propaganda blitz in Missouri will be predictions of economic doom if the Right to Work law is allowed to take effect.

“But next year union flacks may have their work cut out for them, because in neighboring Kentucky, a Right to Work law adopted just a few weeks before Missouri’s is being implemented, and the Bluegrass State’s economic future is looking brighter and brighter.”

As Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin pointed out at a May 26 press conference, the state had already attracted by then a total of $5.8 billion in announced 2017 private capital investments by job-creating businesses.

Kentucky Broke Annual Record For Capital Investments Less Than Halfway Through 2017

Not quite five months into the year, Kentucky had already surpassed its previous annual capital-investment record of $5.1 billion, achieved in 2015.

By the end of June, a little more than a month later and halfway through 2017, companies had pledged to make more than $6.76 billion in new-facility investments and expansion projects in Kentucky.

With six months of the year left, the previous annual record had been surpassed by 32%!

A key example of the kind of investment for which Right to Work Kentucky has been successfully competing is Braidy Industry’s commitment, announced in late April, to build a $1.3 billion aluminum rolling mill in Greenup County.

Jobs Being Created Offer Good Pay and Benefits For Kentucky Employees

Construction will begin next year. When the plant is finished, it will hire roughly 550 workers for jobs paying $38 an hour plus benefits.

And according to Braidy CEO Craig Bouchard, without Right to Work, Kentucky “wouldn’t have been on the list” of possible sites.

Given the high wages offered by the firm, especially when Kentucky’s low cost of living is factored in, and fringe benefits like a day care facility, fitness centers, and lunches every day for $1, “it’s going to be a place you want to work,” Mr. Bouchard has credibly predicted.

Mr. Leen said the nascent economic boom in neighboring Kentucky, a state that prior to enactment of its Right to Work law had experienced long-term private-sector job growth well below the U.S. average, could make it difficult for union bosses to demonize Right to Work in Missouri.

“Of course,” Mr. Leen added, “the good economic news from Kentucky will only have a positive impact on the Right to Work ballot campaign in Missouri if Missourians hear about it.

“Thanks to generous members and supporters nationwide, the Committee is now preparing to invest ample amounts of time, money and talent into helping Missouri citizens see through Big Labor propaganda about Right to Work before they vote on it.

“Informing Missourians about what’s happening in Kentucky is an important part of the plan.”

(Source: November 2017 National Right to Work Newsletter)