School officials have hailed PA 112 as a sorely needed remedy to an unfair, union-favored bargaining system, while unions challenged these new amendments to PERA in court. Since the passage of PA 112, there have been no strikes by Michigan teachers. In 1994, the Michigan legislature passed PA 112 which, among other things, amended PERA to re-establish penalties for government employee work stoppages. It also removed certain subjects from the scope of mandatory bargaining, giving school boards and administrators greater control.

School officials have hailed PA 112 as a sorely needed remedy to an unfair, union-favored bargaining system,14 while unions challenged these new amendments to PERA in court. In 1995, the MEA and AFL-CIO moved to have the law declared an unconstitutional violation of the free speech and free association rights of it members.15 The Michigan Supreme Court, in rejecting the unions' challenge, held that the obligation of public employers to bargain is "imposed by statute and may be limited by statute."16

Since the passage of PA 112, there have been no strikes by Michigan teachers. In Saginaw, which suffered six strikes between 1967 and 1990, teachers recently acknowledged that because of the economic penalties imposed under PA 112, they have stayed in the classrooms.17

PA 112 has a great number of new and important implications for school boards bargaining with public employee unions. These implications are discussed throughout this study.