MADISON, Wis. (Reuters) - Wisconsin Governor
Scott Walker released Wednesday bond restructuring and other
plans to close a current year budget gap that were cut from a
controversial law to curb the powers of public sector unions.
Walker had stripped the restructuring from legislation that
reduced collective bargaining and other powers for many public
sector unions so the Republican-majority state Senate could
approve the measure without Democrats, who had fled the state
to stall a vote.
The proposal introduced Wednesday restructures $165
million of debt, pushes payments out to future years and uses
additional federal appropriations to meet Medicaid costs.
The governor's original package of proposals which included
required annual recertification votes touched off weeks of
pro-union protests in Madison that grew to be the biggest
demonstrations there since the Vietnam war and included
occupation of the Capitol Building.
The prior current year budget bill was approved by the
Republican-majority legislature and signed by Walker earlier in
March, but a Wisconsin judge has blocked implementation while
she hears a legal challenge to the way the law was approved.
The state Administration Department and Justice Department
were reviewing on Wednesday the judge's latest order blocking
the collective bargaining bill.
(Writing by David Bailey; Editing by Jerry Norton)
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