On June 17, a House Appropriations Subcommittee approved a FY 2016 spending bill that would prevent the National Labor Relations Board from implementing or enforcing the so-called “ambush” election rule. The rule took effect this spring and would shorten to as few as 14 days - down from an average 38 days - the period of time between a union filing a petition for election and the election itself. This would deny multifamily employers due process rights and the ability to communicate with their employees before an election.
The chances of overturning the rule through the appropriations process are uncertain because President Obama and Republican lawmakers cannot agree to overall FY 2016 spending limits. The President also vetoed legislation this year that would have overturned the rule. This leaves many questioning why he would agree to approving it as part of the appropriations process.
Importantly, the ambush election rule is also the subject of two court cases. The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas upheld the rule this month after a challenge from business groups and it’s expected to be appealed. And a case in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia filed by the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace awaits decision.
NMHC/NAA will continue to advocate for overturning the rule, which could result in employees hearing about the prospect of rising wages and benefits from union organizers.