Friday, June 18, 2010

Short-Staffed Labor Board, Shouldn't Affect News-Press Cases

On this Friday afternoon I interrupt my non-stop coverage of "Josh Lynn, the Excommunication Comedy" to bring you a News-Press controversy update. (I'm sure that Joyce Dudley and Ann Bramsen are relieved to hear that.)

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the National Labor Relations Board had no authority to rule on cases after its membership dwindled from five to two members in January of 2008.

During the period of time from the beginning of 2008 to earlier this year, the NLRB has issued nearly 600 decisions. Many, if not all of those decisions, will have to be reconsidered.

So, to those of us who have been following the News-Press controversy the question is, will any of the NLRB's decisions or rulings on the News-Press vs. Teamster's Union labor case be affected?

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The answer is "no," this according to Union lawyer Ira Gottlieb.

"No (News-Press) adjudications are affected, since the union was certified by a three-member panel in August, 2007 before the Board dropped to two members, and we have three Administrative Law Judge decisions now awaiting decision by an NLRB with sufficient members since the president's recess appointments this past March."

Of course, with the NLRB now getting hundreds of cases kicked back to it all at once, my guess is it is highly likely that could delay a decision by the NLRB on two News-Press appeals that are now, or about to be, before it. The December 2007 decision of Judge Kocol ruling that the "News-Press Eight" are entitled to reinstatement and the decision from Judge Anderson issued late last month that the News-Press had committed numerous violations of the National Labor Relations Act including the failure to bargain in good faith.

I now return you to our regularly scheduled programming.

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