By Edwin S. Hopson
The National Labor Relations Board, by a vote of 3 to 2, has issued a final rule published in the Federal Register on December 15, 2014, amending the Board’s representation–case procedures to, among other things, reduce the time between the filing of a petition for representation election with the NLRB and the date of the NLRB election. The rule is to take effect on April 14, 2015.
The final rule was approved by Democrats Mark Gaston Pearce, Kent Y. Hirozawa and Nancy Schiffer, with Republicans Philip A. Miscimarra and Harry I. Johnson III dissenting.
The final rule:
■ Provides for electronic filing and transmission of election petitions and other documents;
■ Adopts best practices and uniform procedures across all NLRB regional offices;
■ Requires that additional contact information for employees voting in the election (personal telephone numbers and email addresses) be included on voter lists to be turned over to the union, to the extent that information is available to the employer; and
■ Consolidates all election-related appeals to the Board into a single appeals process post-election.
The bottom line is, unions will be able to obtain much faster scheduling of elections, substantially reducing the time between the filing of the petition and the election during which the employer can campaign.