Montgomery County Council will sue the county's Board of Elections after the board put the questions of police bargaining rights on the 2012 general election ballot.
The issue revolves around "effects bargaining" and prior to the passage of a law in July, police could bargain certain management decisions, such as how officers are given new assignments and how to implement a new computer system used by employees.
The law does not affect the rights of police officers to negotiate items such as salary and benefits. According to a statement released Tuesday by County Council President Roger Berliner, county police officers were the sole county employees to possess this “unique” managerial bargaining right.
In November, the Fraternal Order of Police gathered enough signatures to take the legislation to a referendum in the 2012 general election. Shortly after the Board of Elections approved the petition to referendum, the Montgomery County Council filed a lawsuit challenging the board’s decision.
Attorney Jonathan Shurberg, of Silver Spring, is assisting the county's legal challenge, looking into the validity and procedure of the police petition efforts and whether the Montgomery County Board of Elections was correct in passing the petition to referendum.
County Council members have expressed concern that signature seekers gave inaccurate or incomplete information about the issues surrounding the repeal of effects bargaining.
Have you been approached by petitioners? Do you think petitioners misrepresented the issue to county residents? Should effects bargaining be restored to Montgomery County Police?