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A group of Congressmen Feb. 9 wrote a joint resolution Feb. 9 that would stop the implementation of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ambush election rule. The resolution was introduced by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Rep. John Kline (R-Minn.), with the support of House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). Sen. Alexander is chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions and Rep. Kline is chairman of the House Committee on Education.

ABC has long supported overturning the ambush rule “through every available avenue” and sent letters to both Chairman Alexander and Chairman Kline thanking them for their efforts in leading Congress’ attempt to prevent the ambush rule from taking effect. 

In its letter to Chairmen Alexander and Kline, ABC cited the comments submitted by ABC National and more than 1,200 ABC members in April 2014. In its comments, ABC expressed concern that “the proposed rule will significantly impede the ability of construction industry employers to protect their rights in the pre-election hearing process; hinder the ability of construction employers to make facts and information regarding union representation available to employees; and impose numerous burdens on the small merit shop businesses and their employees that constitute the overwhelming majority of the construction industry without any reasoned justification for imposing such burdens.” 

ABC also noted in its letter that “the majority of ABC member companies are small businesses, which typically do not employ legal counsel or a human resources representative.  Under the rule, employers are required to disclose voter eligibility lists to petitioning unions within two days after the direction of election. This creates a heavy burden on construction employers who are bound by unique voter eligibility requirements that allow laid off employees meeting criteria specified by the Board to vote in NLRB elections.” 

"This rule allows a union to force an election before an employee has a chance to figure out what is going on,” Chairman Alexander said when introducing the resolution. “It also jeopardizes employees' privacy by requiring employees to turn over personal information including email addresses, phone numbers, shift hours, and locations to union organizers." 

 “Congress must use every available tool to stop this flawed regulatory scheme. I am pleased to join my House and Senate colleagues in authoring this resolution and hope Congress will send it to the president as soon as possible,” added Chairman Kline.

The resolution seeks to halt the ambush rule through the Congressional Review Act (CRA). The CRA allows the House and Senate to vote on a joint resolution of disapproval to stop a federal agency from implementing a rule or regulation or from issuing a similar regulation without congressional authorization. A resolution of disapproval only needs a simple majority to pass and cannot be filibustered or amended.

ABC of Texas and the Central Texas Chapter of ABC filed a lawsuit Jan. 13 seeking to overturn the ambush election rule.

The ambush election rule will go into effect April 14, 2015, unless a court or Congress blocks enforcement of the new rule.