U.S. Chamber Challenges Legality of NLRB Appointments

By | March 21, 2012

The U.S. Chamber and the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW) asked the DC Circuit for permission to join a lawsuit challenging the validity of three “recess” appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) last Thursday. Invalidating those recess appointments would prevent the NLRB from making rulings due to lack of quorum.

Tom Donohue, president and CEO of the Chamber said:

Appointing three of five members to the NLRB in a legally questionable way casts doubt on the work of the entire agency. We cautioned in January that shoehorning these nominees into office in this controversial way would throw the legal validity of every decision of the Board into question.  Our concern has now become a reality.  We are simply asking the courts to sort out the question of the NLRB’s authority quickly, so that employers and employees alike can have predictability and certainty.

Donohue also addressed how these appointments have created uncertainty:

Employers and employees need to know what it means when the NLRB orders an employer to bargain with a union, to modify its compensation and benefit plans, or to cease contracting work — to offer just a few examples.  Is the order legally rendered, or will it be invalidated in the future?  Without this kind of certainty, we cannot foster an environment that will lead to economic growth and job creation.

The Chamber asserts that “the courts should resolve the question of the NLRB’s authority quickly, so that employers and employees alike can have predictability and certainty.”

The Chamber’s motion for leave to intervene is available here.

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