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19 Nov 2012 Overpaying Our Way Over The Edge of The Fiscal Cliff

While the debate about the fiscal cliff has been about what services to eliminate and how much to raise taxes, ignored almost entirely is the fact that the government grossly overpays for the services it buys. According to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for a federal government employee (including the Post Office) was $70,100 per year. For all private sector workers, that number was $43,980. That is,…

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16 Nov 2012 First Hockey and Now Twinkies Too?

Labor disputes are messing with two of America’s favorites: Hockey and Twinkies. Today is Day 62 of the NHL lockout. The Winter Classic and 326 regular season games have already been cancelled. And yesterday NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman proposed a two-week moratorium on further talks. The NHL and NHLPA worked at it over the last two weeks and even met for six consecutive days in New York. Experienced labor negotiators were hopeful not only because the parties were at the table…

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15 Nov 2012 Right to Work States Outstrip Others In Job Growth

According to a study by the National Institute of Labor Relations Research (the NILRR), the bulk of the country’s job growth since the end of the recession in 2008 took place in right to work states. Right to work states have some form of limitation on the ability to make paying union dues a condition of employment. The NILRR analyzed data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and found that approximately 72 percent of…

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09 Nov 2012 NLRB Weekly Summary of Decisions for November 5-9, 2012

The National Labor Relations Board’s (the “NLRB”) weekly summary of decisions for November 5-9, 2012, is now available on the Board’s website. The summary of NLRB decisions can be accessed by visiting the NLRB’s website here or clicking on the link below. NLRB’s Weekly Summary of Decisions for November 5-9, 2012. btlaborBT Labor Relations is managed by the labor law attorneys at Barnes & Thornburg. The blog aims to be a source for news, analysis, and commentary on traditional labor legal…

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09 Nov 2012 NLRB Updates Workload of Division Judges in 2012

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently provided an update on the workload of its Division of Judges in 2012.  During 2012, Administrative Law Judges disposed of 645 cases. Of those 645 cases, the Judges issued 207 decisions and settled 438 cases.  According to the NLRB, “[t]he high ratio of settlements to decisions reflects a continuing effort by the Division to encourage the resolution of cases by the parties themselves, through judges’ involvement in pre-trial conference…

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09 Nov 2012 NLRB ALJ Finds Employee Arbitration Policy Unlawful

The NLRB has continued to chip away at employer efforts to implement alternative dispute resolution programs in the workplace.  In a decision issued on election day, an NLRB ALJ found that 24 Hour Fitness USA, Inc.’s arbitration policy violated the National Labor Relations Act even though employees could opt out of the program and even though it specifically informed employees of their right to file a separate NLRB charge. This follows an earlier decision by the full…

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07 Nov 2012 Well That’s $23 Million Down the Drain

The UAW and other unions spent more than $23 million in their campaign to amend the Michigan Constitution to make unionization a right protected under the state’s constitution. After fighting a tough fight through the Michigan courts to even get Proposal 2 on the ballot, Michigan voters on Tuesday soundly defeated the measure 58 percent to 42 percent. The unions pushed Proposal 2 because of what they viewed as anti-labor initiatives from Governor Snyder as well as the threat posed when…

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05 Nov 2012 AFL-CIO President Declares that EFCA Will Be Passed Into Law If President Obama Re-elected

On the eve of the Presidential election, AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka declared that the Employee Free Choice Act (“EFCA”) – the controversial measure that would make it significantly easier for workers to unionize – would be passed into law if President Obama is elected to a second term. EFCA was a prominent part of President Obama’s early platform, but stalled in Congress. The NLRB has sought to implement parts of EFCA via regulatory changes and…

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02 Nov 2012 NLRB Weekly Summary of Decisions for October 22-26, 2012

The National Labor Relations Board’s (the “NLRB”) weekly summary of decisions for October 15-19, 2012, is now available on the Board’s website. The summary of NLRB decisions can be accessed by visiting the NLRB’s website here or clicking on the link below. NLRB’s Weekly Summary of Decisions for October 22-26, 2012 btlaborBT Labor Relations is managed by the labor law attorneys at Barnes & Thornburg. The blog aims to be a source for news, analysis, and commentary on traditional labor legal issues,…

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01 Nov 2012 NLRB Steps Away from the At-Will “Ledge”

Employers have been out on the ledge over recent NLRB actions on at-will disclaimers, but a guidance issued this week by Acting GC Lafe Solomon may have thrown a little water on the raging fire over whether these routine at-will disclaimers violate the National Labor Relations Act.  On Oct. 31, 2012, Solomon released a guidance based on two advisory opinions, Rocha Transportation and Mimi’s Café, both of which found at-will employee handbook language to be…

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