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Hearing Scheduled for Union Lawsuit

By Angela Hatton

Vienna, IL – A hearing is scheduled next week in southern Illinois in a major union's lawsuit meant to block Illinois Governor Pat Quinn's plan to lay off about 26-hundred state employees. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees sued last month in Johnson County, arguing that the layoffs shouldn't be allowed until the state finishes negotiating over their impact. The union also argues the layoffs would create serious safety hazards for workers at Illinois prisons, including those at the Vienna Correctional Center. The Democratic governor says the layoffs are necessary to help balance the state budget, which is billions of dollars in the red. Quinn also wants the union to agree to unpaid furlough days for many state employees. The hearing is scheduled for September 10 in Vienna.