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NLRB General Counsel Signals Important Changes at NLRB

National Labor Relations Board General Counsel Peter Robb continues to outline his plans for change at the NLRB.  First came his sweeping five-page Memorandum directing NLRB Regional Offices to submit to his Division of Advice for review cases involving “significant legal issues.” See our article, “New Labor Board General Counsel Issues Plans For Reversing Course.”  That was followed by his Memorandum to Regional Offices setting forth a variety of circumstances under which those offices should process “currently active [representation] cases” applying the NLRB’s recent decision (PCC Structurals, Inc.) that overruled Specialty Healthcare.  For more on that Memorandum, see “New NLRB GC Opens Door to Possible Widespread Bargaining Unit Changes.”

Robb’s latest plan for change was revealed in a recent conference call with NLRB regional directors. During that January 11, 2018 call, Robb said he wants to reorganize the agency’s 26 regional offices into a smaller number of districts or regions, run by officials who report directly to the General Counsel, Bloomberg Law has reported. This could place decision-making in the hands of officials who are not located in the local regional offices.  An NLRB spokesperson said there is currently no plan to reorganize the Board’s regional office structure.

Robb’s reported plan could change significantly how the NLRB operates. Presently, regional directors generally decide how their offices investigate unfair labor practice (ULP) charges and handle representation proceedings. They decide the course of ULP allegations against employers and unions: a formal complaint for hearing by an administrative law judge or dismissal.

Thomas P. McDonough​ also contributed to this article.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2018

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About this Author

Howard Bloom, Jackson Lewis, labor union attorney, unfair practice investigations lawyer, employment legal counsel, bargaining law
Principal

Howard M. Bloom is a Principal in the Boston, Massachusetts, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He has practiced labor and employment law representing exclusively employers for more than 36 years.

Mr. Bloom counsels clients in a variety of industries on labor law issues. He trains and advises executives, managers and supervisors on union awareness and positive employee relations, and assists employers in connection with union card-signing efforts, traditional union representation and corporate campaigns, and union decertification...

617-367-0025
Philip B. Rosen, Jackson Lewis, Preventive Practices Lawyer, Collective Bargaining Attorney
Principal

Philip B. Rosen is a Principal in the New York City, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is a member of the firm's Board of Directors and co-leads the firm's Labor and Preventive Practices Group. He joined the firm in 1979 and served as Managing Partner of the New York City office from 1989 to 2009.

Mr. Rosen lectures extensively, conducts management training, and advises clients with respect to legislative and regulatory initiatives, corporate strategies, business ethics, social media, reorganizations and reductions-in-force, purchase/sale transactions, sexual harassment and other workplace conduct rules, compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act, wrongful discharge and other workplace litigation, corporate campaigns and union organizing matters, collective bargaining, arbitration and National Labor Relations Board proceedings. He has been quoted by the press on many labor matters, including the National Labor Relations Board’s recent initiatives on protected concerted activity and the proposed Notice Posting requirements.

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