With 5 New Members Now Confirmed, the NLRB Is Back in Business

By Eric B. Meyer

Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted mainly along party lines to confirm five members — a full slate — to the National Labor Relations Board.

Ladies and gentlemen, the National Labor Relations Board is back in business.

(Well, somebody tell that to the Board, where it’s been business as usual lately. More on that in a moment.)

Three Democrats and two Republicans were confirmed.

Board has been operated shorthanded

Mark Gaston Pearce (D), originally appointed to the Board in 2010, was re-appointed to the Board and will serve as Chairman. The new Board members are Kent Hirozawa (D), Chief Counsel to Mr. Pearce, Nancy Schiffer (D), an attorney at the AFL-CIO, Philip Miscimarra (R), a partner in the labor and employment group of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP, and Harry Johnson III (R), a partner with Arent Fox LLP, who follows me on Twitter, which makes me the Board’s Kevin Bacon.

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Until yesterday, the NLRB had been operating with three members, two of whom, Sharon Block and Richard F. Griffin, Jr., were recess appointments of President Obama. Various courts of appeals had split on whether the intra-session appointments of Block and Griffin were constitutional.

Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court, which had already ruled that the NLRB is powerless to rule with less than a quorum of three members, agreed in National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning to decide the constitutional issue. But since we now have a full Board, it doesn’t much matter.

Indeed, any NLRB ruling in doubt — remember quickie elections? — is sure to be ratified with the full complement of members.

This was originally published on Eric B. Meyer’s blog, The Employer Handbook.

You know that scientist in the action movie who has all the right answers if only the government would just pay attention? Eric B. Meyer, Esq. gets companies HR-compliant before the action sequence. Serving clients nationwide, Eric is a Partner at FisherBroyles, LLP, which is the largest full-service, cloud-based law firm in the world, with approximately 210 attorneys in 21 offices nationwide. Eric is also a volunteer EEOC mediator, a paid private mediator, and publisher of The Employer Handbook (www.TheEmployerHandbook.com), which is pretty much the best employment law blog ever. That, and he's been quoted in the British tabloids. #Bucketlist.

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