Rauner asks labor board to rule if labor talks at impasse

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Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) _ Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner is asking a labor board to determine whether negotiations with the state’s largest public employee union have reached an impasse.

Rauner’s request Friday opens the door for him to impose his own terms for a contract if the Illinois Labor Relations Board rules the parties are deadlocked.

Roberta Lynch is executive director of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees state council. She says in a statement that Rauner’s action represents a “my way or no way” approach blocking a fair agreement. AFSCME rejects Rauner’s claim it doesn’t want to seriously negotiate.

Contract talks have been ongoing for more than a year. The previous contract with AFSCME representing 36,000 employees expired June 30. Negotiations have continued without the possibility of a strike or lockout.

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