House Committee Holds Hearing on Back-Door NLRB Regulations

Reaffirming the need to reign in an activist NLRB that is legislating through regulation, the House Committee on Education and the Workforce held a full committee hearing last week titled “A Culture of Union Favoritism: Recent Actions of the National Labor Relations Board.”  The hearing sought to address recent actions by the NLRB, including “card check” regulation that Congress refused to put into law, a decision altering the makeup of bargaining units to allow for “micro-unions”, and a rule requiring employers to display a poster notifying employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act.

Chairman John Kline (R-Minn.), in his opening remarks, set the tone for the hearing:

“Through three decisions handed down in one afternoon, the board restricted workers’ right to a secret ballot election, undermined employers’ ability to maintain unity in the workplace, and created new barriers for those who wish to challenge union representation.”  

Among the witnesses was Mr. Curtis Mack, a former NLRB regional director in Atlanta.  Mr. Mack, a self-proclaimed supporter of the Democratic Party and the Obama administration, commented that he did not see any merit in the “card check lite” ruling because it forced parties into a relationship with a union that neither the employer nor the workers desired.

Another witness, Mr. Roger King, an attorney with years of experience practicing labor law, stated “the direction of the current Board, however, is troubling.” King went on to say that “the current Board, through adjudication, rulemaking, and proposed rulemaking, has implemented one of the most active agendas pursued by any Board in the history of the Agency.”

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) pointed to the testimony of  Mr. King that very few of the Board’s decisions are unanimous, which further points to the partisan nature of the Board. 

IFA continues to advocate for pro-growth policies and repeal of regulations that stifle small business growth.  An activist NLRB threatens to disrupt the relationship between workers and employers and derail any plans for new hiring.  Such egregious pro-union decisions, including the Board’s rulings and the Dept. of Labor’s recent “gag rule” requiring employers disclose all advice received from legal counsel, will threaten the ability of employers to create jobs and drive the recovery of our nation’s economy. 

Posted by Kevin Serafino, IFA Government Relations & Public Policy