On December 21, The National Labor Relations Board voted 2-1 in favor of new steps to increase the speed of union elections. The Board hopes to keep election and campaign time to less than 21 days. Often, there are long delays to unionizing elections because of legal challenges brought by the employer. The Board wants to require that these challenges be postponed until after the employees have voted for or against the union. These changes were first proposed in June and the NLRB held public hearings and reviewed thousands of public comments. The new rules will likely be challenged by employers in court. More coverage here.
This was the Board’s last major policy decision before it lost one member, which leaves it without a quorum to act. President Obama has nominated Sharon Block and Richard Griffin to the Board. Ms. Block is currently deputy assistant secretary of Congressional affairs with the Labor Department. Mr. Griffin has served on the board of the AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee since 1994 and is general counsel to the International Union of Operating Engineers. Republicans may well block these nominations in an effort to prevent the Board from functioning at all. More coverage here.