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NLRB Extends Deadline for Public Feedback on Potential Changes to Its ‘Ambush Election Rule’

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On Jan. 26, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced that it is extending the deadline for public feedback on potential changes to its “ambush election rule” to March 19. The deadline previously was Feb. 12.

 

The NLRB announced on Dec. 12 that it was seeking input from the public regarding the NLRB’s 2014 ambush election rule. According to the agency’s press release, the NLRB specifically is evaluating whether the rule should remain as is, be modified, or rescinded in its entirety. The press release provides instructions for submitting feedback.

 

A recently released report from the NLRB confirms that the agency’s ambush election rule, that went into effect in April 2015, has significantly truncated the time employers have to conduct union campaigns. Under the old rules, from April 14, 2014, through Jan. 12, 2015, the median time from a union petition being filed to election was 38 days. For fiscal year 2017, the median time from petition to election was 23 days – more than two full weeks shorter. In other words, that’s two weeks less time for companies to vet the issues giving rise to a petition and to implement a communications plan neutralizing those issues in order to remain union free. This follows a similar report issued by the NLRB last year that also showed shorter campaign windows since the rules went into effect.

 

Many changes were afoot at the NLRB at the end of last year. In the event the NLRB reverses course on the ambush election rule and eliminates or significantly alters it, we may be able to add it to a growing list of recent “wins” at the agency for employers.

 

David Pryzbylski

Recently recognized as one of the top under-40 labor lawyers in the nation by Law360, David J. Pryzbylski’s interest in labor relations began early in high school, having grown up next to several of the largest steel mills in the world. Today, David is a Partner in Barnes & Thornburg LLP’s Labor & Employment Department. Building on his interest in labor relations, he concentrates a large portion of his practice on assisting employers with traditional labor matters, including collective bargaining; work stoppages; arbitrations; union avoidance training and strategies; union representation elections; unfair labor practice charges; contract administration; and various other labor relations issues.

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