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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

Illinois Labor Relations Board Faces Historic Decision


Director Melissa Mlynski says the board usually must determine whether a public employer and a public employees’ union are legitimately at an impasse, or whether they should work it out.

This time, the contract talks in question cover 36,000 state employees.

“Our process will be as it always is, with all of our cases. Our investigation process and if necessary, our investigative hearing process, will follow the same course that they all do,” Mlynski said.

It’s expected to take weeks. State law doesn't set any deadlines. 

Mlynski would only say the board will work expeditiously.

AFSCME is fighting Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's request that the board declare an impasse. 

The two sides failed to agree to a new contract after a year of talks.

At stake are state employees' wages, overtime benefits and health care coverage.

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