In 2012, the Legislature passed Public Act 53, which stopped automatic payroll deductions of union dues from public school employees’ paychecks.[87] As noted earlier under “Proposed Article I, Section 28(4),” such a prohibition can be justified on grounds of preventing the apparatus of government — in this case school districts — from becoming entangled in the collection of money for political purposes, since a significant portion of union dues are used for political activity.

Under this law, school employee unions must collect their members’ union dues themselves, something that requires time and money. Unions have challenged the law in court partly on equal protection grounds (only public school employee unions were included in the bill), but the dispute is still under litigation.[*] Unions could challenge Public Act 53 on grounds that it violated Proposal 2’s protection of union financial support provisions in collective bargaining agreements (Article I, Section 28(4)).

[*] In Bailey v Callaghan, __FSupp2d__ , 2012 WL 2115300 (EDMich 2012), a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction. The case is on appeal to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.