By Edwin S. Hopson
On August 4, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board announced that on July 18, 2014, it had “unanimously ratified all administrative, personnel, and procurement matters taken by the Board from January 4, 2012 to August 5, 2013.” This action was in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in NLRB v. Noel Canning holding that the Members recess-appointed on January 4, 2012 by President Obama were not validly appointed. The current Board was without question validly appointed on August 5, 2013, at which time a quorum was regained.
From January 4, 2012 to August 5, 2013, the NLRB took formal action on numerous matters including the appointment of some Regional Directors and Administrative Law Judges. In addition, there were agency restructurings of regional and headquarters offices. At the time these actions were taken, some parties appearing before the Board took exception to actions taken by some of these persons who they claimed were invalidly appointed. In an effort to eliminate those claims and challenges, the NLRB has taken this action.
In addition, the NLRB expressly authorized the following actions:
■ The selection of Dennis Walsh as Regional Director for Region 4 (Philadelphia);
■ The selection of Margaret Diaz as Regional Director for Region 12 (Tampa);
■ The selection of Mori Rubin as Regional Director for Region 31 (Los Angeles);
■ The selection of Kenneth Chu, Christine Dibble, Melissa Olivero, Susan Flynn, and Donna Dawson as Administrative Law Judges;
■ The restructuring of various Field Offices;
■ The restructuring of Headquarters’ Offices.
On July 30, 2014, the NLRB announced that following the Board’s July 18, 2014 authorization, Regional Directors Walsh, Diaz, and Rubin ratified all actions taken by them or on their behalf from the dates of their initial appointments and July 18, 2014. These ratifications also included all personnel and administrative decisions, all actions in representation case matters, and all actions in unfair labor practice cases taken by these Regional Directors.
Whether this action by the Board and the several Regional Directors will be effective to eliminate pending challenges remains to be seen.
The July 18, 2014 Minute of Board Action can be viewed here.