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Nevada corrections workers file for union recognition

CARSON CITY — Nevada corrections workers on Friday became the first group to file for union recognition under a new law that gives state employees the right to collectively bargain.

The group of workers filed for recognition with the state’s Employee-Management Relations Board as the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 4041, which state workers have organized under for roughly two decades. But until a change made in the 2019 Legislature, they were not able to negotiate for wages and benefits.

“For years we’ve fought as AFSCME Local 4041 for the resources we need to provide the best services we can to the state. I am proud to continue to do so through the collective bargaining process,” said Shari Kassebaum, a corrections sergeant with the state, in a statement.

Senate Bill 135, which was approved by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Steve Sisolak earlier this year, gave state workers the right to collectively bargain. But a last-minute change to the bill towards the end of the legislative session gave the executive branch the authority to fund state workers salaries and wage rates at any level that the “governor deems appropriate,” regardless of what agreement the bargaining produces.

Contact Capital Bureau Chief Colton Lochhead at clochhead@reviewjournal.com or 775-461-3820. Follow @ColtonLochhead on Twitter.

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