Wyatt Employment Law Report


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NLRB Further Responds to Supreme Court’s New Process Steel Decision

By Edwin S. Hopson

After the June 17, 2010, Supreme Court decision in New Process Steel v. NLRB in which the court invalidated Board decisions issued while there were only two Board Members serving during the period January 1, 2008 to April 5, 2010, the Board announced it would begin reviewing about 100 two-Member Board cases in order to correct the defect found by the court.  Both the Supreme Court’s majority and dissenting justices made mention of the fact that the Board had also delegated certain of its authority to the Board’s General Counsel, who acted upon that delegation during the 27 month two-Member Board period.  According to the NLRB’s  July 8, 2010, press release, the December 2007 delegation had provided “the General Counsel full and final authority on behalf of the Board to initiate and prosecute injunction proceedings under Section 10(j), or Section 10(e) and (f) of the National Labor Relations Act, contempt proceedings pertaining to the enforcement of or compliance with any order of the Board, and any other court litigation that would otherwise require Board authorization; and to institute and conduct appeals to the Supreme Court by writ of error or on petition for certiorari.”

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President Obama Names Lafe Solomon Acting General Counsel at the NLRB

By Edwin S. Hopson

The National Labor Relations Board announced on June 21, 2010, that Lafe E. Solomon, a career NLRB attorney, has been named Acting General Counsel by President Obama, replacing Ron Meisburg who resigned to return to private law practice. Solomon had most recently been Director of Representation Appeals at the NLRB. 

 According to the Board’s press release, Solomon began his Agency career as a field examiner in Seattle in 1972. After obtaining his law degree, Solomon took an attorney position in the NLRB’s Office of Appeals. He later transferred to the Appellate Court Branch.  After two years, Solomon left the General Counsel side of the Board and joined the staff of former Board Member Don Zimmerman. He also worked on the staffs of Board Members Donald Dotson, Robert Hunter, John Higgins, James Stephens, Mary Cracraft, John Raudabaugh, William Gould, Sarah Fox and current Chairman, Wilma Liebman.

 The NLRB General Counsel is the Board’s top investigative and prosecutorial position, and has supervisory authority over all Regional Offices across the country.  He also guides policy on issuing complaints, seeking injunctions, and enforcing the Board’s decisions.


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NLRB General Counsel Meisburg Leaving to Enter Private Practice

By Edwin S. Hopson

According to a June 2, 2010, announcement from the Proskauer Rose law firm, Ronald Meisburg, General Counsel at the National Labor Relations Board, is leaving government to join Proskauer as a partner in its Labor & Employment Law Department and will practice out of the firm’s Washington, D.C. and New York City offices.

 Meisburg, whose term as General Counsel was to expire in August of this year, had been serving as General Counsel since January, 2006.  He had also served as one of the five Members of the NLRB under a recess appointment by President Bush in 2004.  According to an NLRB press release, Meisburg’s last day in office will be June 20.

 After graduating from the University of Louisville School of Law, Meisburg worked at the U.S. Department of Labor’s Solicitor’s Office and was in private practice in Washington, D.C. for some 25 years before going to the Board.

 President Obama will now nominate a new General Counsel who must be confirmed by the Senate.