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From the category archives: Politics & Policy

Politics & Policy - This is the category that gets pulled into the Politics & Policy landing page.

West Virginia Enacts Prevailing Wage Repeal and Right to Work

On Feb. 12, the West Virginia legislature voted 18-16 to override Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s vetoes of  a prevailing wage repeal bill and the West Virginia Workplace Freedom Act, making West Virginia the 26th Right to Work state in the country and the fourth state to pass Right to Work since 2012. 

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New Hampshire Rejects Prevailing Wage Bill

Last week, the New Hampshire House rejected a bill (House Bill 1641) that would have required prevailing wage be paid on all state construction projects. Citing a union-backed study, proponents of the bill argued the legislation would create jobs, spur economic activity, and raise workers’ wages without increasing the cost of projects. Opponents rejected those assertions and insisted the state would pay more for construction projects under the provisions of the bill. 

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Prevailing Wage’s Impact on Affordable Housing

The New York Independent Budget Office (IBO) has released a revised report on the impact prevailing wage requirements would have on affordable housing projects built with the 421a property tax break. The 421a tax credit had been the subject of extensive negotiations in the past months. In Jan. 2016, the parties involved announced they could not reach a compromise, killing the tax credit and jeopardizing Mayor de Blasio’s plans for 80,000 affordable housing units for New York City residents. The agency had initially estimated that prevailing wage requirements would add $2.8 billion to the initiative’s total, but the agency says that figure was low as a result of data errors. After receiving additional information from the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, IBO now estimates prevailing wage requirements would cost the city an additional $4.2 billion, increasing affordable housing construction costs by 23 percent or $80,000 per unit
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NLRB Extends Ban on Captive-Audience Meetings Prior to Mail Ballot Elections

In its Jan. 29 decision in Guardsmark, LLC, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) extended its restriction on captive-audience meetings in the run up to a mail ballot union election by an additional 24 hours. Captive-audience meetings occur when an employer holds a group campaign meeting with employee voters during work hours to oppose union representation. The NLRB prohibits these meetings in the 24 hours leading up to the “scheduled time for conducting” a manual election; however, the NLRB had not imposed a similar preliminary ban in mail ballot elections until the Guardsmark decision.
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West Virginia Legislature Advances Prevailing Wage Repeal, Right to Work

On Feb. 4, the West Virginia Legislature sent two important bills to the governor’s desk. The House of Delegates passed ABC-supported right-to work legislation, the “Workplace Freedom Act” (SB 1) by a vote of 54-46, while the state Senate approved legislation repealing the state’s prevailing wage law along party lines. The measures were intensely debated in both chambers in the weeks leading up to the votes. West Virginia’s prevailing wage law was mired in controversy following the passage of a reform bill in 2015 and ABC’s West Virginia Chapter has been a vocal supporter of repealing the state’s prevailing wage. Read the rest of entry »

New West Virginia State Sen. Puts Right-to-Work, Prevailing Wage Repeal in Motion

West Virginia State Senator Sue Cline (R-Wyoming) was sworn into office on Jan. 25 following a Jan. 22 court decision requiring Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (D- W.Va.) to appoint a Republican to fill a vacant seat. Sen. Cline was appointed to fill a vacancy created by the resignation of Sen. Daniel Hall (R-Wyoming), who was elected as a Democrat but switched parties prior to resigning. Read the rest of entry »

President Obama Vetoes Legislation to Rollback Harmful ACA Provisions

The U.S. House of Representatives passed an amended version of the Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act (H.R. 3762) Jan. 6, which would repeal several, job-killing provisions in the Affordable Care Act. The same version of the bill passed the Senate 52-47 in Dec. 2015.
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IRS Extends Deadlines for ACA’s 2015 Information Reporting Requirements

A recent Newsline article discussed the upcoming deadlines for the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) 2015 information reporting requirements under Internal Revenue Code (IRC) sections 6055 and 6056. On Dec. 28, 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2016-4, which extends the deadlines for the 2015 information reporting requirements, both furnishing to individuals and filing with the IRS.
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ABC and Business Community Ask for Delay of "Persuader" Rule

ABC, as part of a coalition representing more than 50 employer organizations, sent a letter Dec. 18 to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) urging them to delay issuing the Department of Labor’s (DOL) final persuader rule until it finalized a rulemaking scheduled for later this year that will make significant changes to Form LM-21, which employers are required to file when they hire a persuader. The final “persuader” rule is currently under review at OIRA.
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DOL Issues Proposed Rule Revising EEO Framework For National Apprenticeship Act

The Department of Labor (DOL) issued a proposed rule revising the equal employment opportunity regulatory framework for the National Apprenticeship Act on Nov. 6. Current regulations prohibit discrimination in registered apprenticeship programs on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, and sex. The proposed rule updates the equal opportunity standards to include age (40 or older), genetic information, sexual orientation and disability among the protected base that cannot be discriminated against. It requires sponsors to take affirmative action to provide equal opportunity in the registered apprenticeship programs.
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