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Justices to hear Idaho labor union free-speech case

By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court yesterday agreed to hear a case involving a free-speech dispute between the state of Idaho and labor unions over payroll deductions for political activities.

The state asked the justices to take the case, Ysursa v. Pocatello Education Association (07-869), which concerns an Idaho law that prohibits cities, counties and school districts from making payroll deductions for donations to political candidates or parties.

Five labor unions and the Idaho state AFL-CIO successfully challenged part of the law in the lower federal courts.

A federal judge and the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco concluded that local units of government and school districts could choose to stop making the payroll deductions, but that the state could not force them to do so.

The dispute centered on the free-speech rights of labor unions stems from Idaho's Voluntary Contributions Act passed by the state Legislature in 2003.

Idaho unions can keep political payroll deductions
9th Circuit panel affirms lower court ruling that 2003 law violates free-speech rights of teachers and their unions. 10.08.07


Public forums at heart of 2 cases

By Tony Mauro After backing Texas' commandments display, justices to consider Summum aphorisms for Utah park; other case involves unions’ political payroll deductions. 04.01.08

Justices question doctrines at heart of union-fees case
By Tony Mauro Viewpoint discrimination, public forum come under questioning at high court in Ysursa case concerning political use of payroll deductions in Idaho. 11.04.08

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