09.13.2011 0

House bill to rein in the NLRB is a start for fixing a larger problem

National Labor Relations BoardBy Adam Bitely — Rep. Tim Scott (R-SC) has introduced a bill in the House that would prohibit the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from forcing a business to relocate, shut down or transfer employment under any circumstance. This, in effect, would be a first step in prohibiting the NLRB from doing what it is attempting to do with Boeing in South Carolina ever again.

The NLRB has proven to be a runaway, out of control government agency. Ruling in favor of Big Labor throughout its history, a bias that has been even more pronounced since Obama took office.   The impact, employers have been forced to make concessions to labor unions to their own detriment hurting their capacity to create new jobs.

The environment that the current board of the NLRB has created is one of chaos for employers as Big Labor is able to tighten its grip around businesses with each decision that the board hands down. Small and large employers are finding themselves having to fight against a government backed agency that is all at once a prosecutor, investigator, judge and jury.

Currently, the board that comprises the NLRB is composed of two Big Labor allied members and only one commissioner to contrast that position. The effect is that the NLRB is able to do whatever bidding labor unions call for.

There is a glimmer of hope on the horizon as former AFL-CIO and SEIU attorney Craig Becker’s term ends.  It was Becker, whose controversial appointment was opposed in the Senate on a bi-partisan basis, who first brought the obscure government agency into the public limelight due to his pronouncements that the NLRB could do Big Labor’s bidding regardless of Congressional action.  Becker’s temporary appointment running out will effectively stop the Board from rendering one-sided verdicts as they will not have the necessary quorum to make decisions.

The Obama NLRB has proven that it will fight against job creation inside of the U.S. with the infamous Boeing case.

When Boeing attempted to open a new facility in right-to-work South Carolina to produce its 787 Dreamliner, the NLRB stepped in and told the airplane manufacturer that it had to open the facility in union-friendly Washington state. Even though no union jobs were lost in Washington state when Boeing decided to open its new facility in South Carolina, the NLRB was going to fight the firm for crossing the union and going elsewhere to ensure that its plane would be manufactured in a timely fashion and not facing the whims of strife created by unions.

As Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson stated about the NLRB, “It cares more about protecting union jobs than creating new jobs.  While millions of Americans struggle to find work in the Obama economy, the NLRB is busy making sure Boeing cannot create jobs in right-to-work South Carolina. A company should be allowed to choose which state it wants to build a factory in free of any governmental interference.  Ironically, it is this exact type of interference that encourages companies to find more favorable labor environments outside of the United States rather than here in America.”

Rep. Tim Scott’s bill is a good first step in bringing an end to the NLRB’s unrelenting war on employers. But legislation is needed to fundamentally change the way the NLRB operates and bring a stop to the runaway government agency that this board has become. The ability for them to investigate, prosecute and judge employers is too much power for political appointees of any political party.

As Bill Wilson said, “Congress needs to move past simply adopting stop-gap measures after the damage is already done.  A comprehensive overhaul of our broken labor relations system is needed that will abolish the Board’s quasi-judicial powers allowing it to serve as prosecutor, judge, and jury in favor of big labor.”

As Congress returns from its summer recess let’s hope that as they pontificate on the ways that they will create jobs in America that they consider the job-killing tendencies of the NLRB. That might be just too much to hope for, but it’s the only way that things will start to turn around.

Adam Bitely is the Editor-in-Chief of NetRightDaily.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @AdamBitely.

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