Minn. Legislature examines child-care union push

Published 11:33 am Monday, November 21, 2011

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Republicans who have questioned the legitimacy and rationale for a union election affecting thousands of child-care providers are airing their concerns in a Minnesota House committee hearing.

The House Commerce Committee planned Monday to delve into the planned December vote. Home-based child-care providers will decide whether to form a union in a vote overseen by the state Bureau of Mediation Services.

Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton called the election via an executive order he issued last week.

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Republican lawmakers have argued that Dayton lacked such authority, and some have vowed to sue.

Union officials said they believe 5,300 licensed providers who receive some type of child-care subsidy from the state would be eligible to vote. All told, they care for about 65,000 children.