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Attorney general seeks outside help in defending position on union dues

A request for proposals, issued Thursday, estimates a budget of $500,000 to $600,000 for the work.

JUNEAU - Attorney General Kevin Clarkson’s office is seeking to hire outside attorneys to help defend his decision that changes are needed in the way Alaska collects union dues.

Alaska Attorney General Kevin Clarkson, left, addresses reporters with Gov. Mike Dunleavy in Anchorage. (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen)

A request for proposals, issued Thursday, estimates a budget of $500,000 to $600,000 for the work.

In an early blow to the state, a judge has granted a public employee union's request to block while the case is heard implementation of Clarkson's opinion and a subsequent administrative order from Gov. Mike Dunleavy.

Clarkson said the state isn’t fully compliant with a U.S. Supreme Court decision that found government workers can’t be forced to contribute to labor unions that represent them in collective bargaining.

Superior Court Judge Gregory Miller, in a preliminary ruling, said the state’s new policy is “unsupported by applicable case law.”