Make us your home page
Instagram

House passes bill that undercuts labor agency's power in Boeing dispute

WASHINGTON — The Republican-dominated House approved a bill Thursday that would undercut the government's labor dispute with Boeing, wading into a case that has angered business groups and become a major political issue in the GOP presidential primary.

The measure, approved on a 238-186 vote, would ban the National Labor Relations Board from ordering any employer to shut down plants or relocate work, even if a company violates labor laws.

While the bill is not expected to get a vote in the Democratic-run Senate, Republicans are trying to keep up pressure on the agency over a move they claim interferes with legitimate business decisions.

"It tells job creators they don't have to fear an activist NLRB reversing important decisions about where to locate a business," said Minnesota Rep. John Kline, chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.

GOP lawmakers have vilified the NLRB for filing a complaint in April that alleges Boeing violated labor laws when it opened a new production line for its 787 airplane in South Carolina, a right-to-work state. The board's acting general counsel, Lafe Solomon, says Boeing went to South Carolina to punish union workers in Washington state for past strikes, and he wants the work moved to the West Coast.

Union leaders claim the bill would render toothless the board's ability to enforce labor laws when companies simply eliminate work to get rid of employees who support unions.

"The bill before us guts the very fundamental rights of American workers to fight for better wages and working conditions, and it makes it easier for companies to outsource American jobs overseas," said Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass.

Boeing has denied the allegations, saying it had valid economic reasons to open the plant in Charleston, S.C. The case is pending before an administrative law judge in Seattle and could last years.

While Boeing would benefit from the bill, it issued a statement Thursday saying it was not endorsing any legislation that might affect the NLRB case.

The National Association of Manufacturers praised the GOP vote, saying the NLRB's actions are having "a chilling impact on job creation and causing a great deal of uncertainty for manufacturers throughout the country."

The House vote fell largely along party lines, but eight Democrats from right-to-work states voted for the bill. There are 22 states with right-to-work laws that ban union fees from being a condition of employment.

How they voted

By a 286-183 vote, the House passed a bill Thursday to ban the National Labor Relations Board from ordering any employer to shut down plants or relocate work, even if a company violates labor laws. A "yes" vote was a vote to approve the bill. Here's how Tampa Bay area representatives voted:

Gus Bilirakis,

R-Palm Harbor: Yes

Richard Nugent,

R-Spring Hill: Yes

Dennis Ross,

R-Lakeland: Yes

C.W. Bill Young,

R-Indian Shores: Yes

Vern Buchanan,

R-Sarasota: Yes

Kathy Castor,

D-Tampa: No

House passes bill that undercuts labor agency's power in Boeing dispute 09/15/11 [Last modified: Thursday, September 15, 2011 9:50pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Associated Press.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. New apartment complex delivers unique floor plans



    Business

    RIVERVIEW — A new luxury apartment community has opened in the Progress Village area touting itself as a distinct living option just 10 miles from downtown Tampa.

    Alta at Magnolia Park dubs its new apartment community, that opened earlier this year in Riverview, a modern and distinct option for living just 10 miles from downtown Tampa.
  2. 'Road to Nowhere' is back: Next phase of Suncoast Parkway coming

    Roads

    Despite intense public opposition and dubious traffic projections, the Florida Department of Transportation has announced that construction of the toll road known as "Suncoast 2" is expected to start in early 2018.

    The Suncoast Parkway ends at U.S. 98 just south of Citrus County. For years residents have opposed extending the toll road, a project dubbed the "Suncoast 2" into Citrus County. But state officials recently announced that the Suncoast 2 should start construction in early 2018. [Stephen J. Coddington  |  TIMES]
  3. A sports rout on Wall Street

    Retail

    NEW YORK — Sporting goods retailers can't shake their losing streak.

  4. Grocery chain Aldi hosting hiring event in Brandon Aug. 24

    Retail

    BRANDON — German grocery chain Aldi is holding a hiring event for its Brandon store Aug. 24. It is looking to fill store associate, shift manager and manager trainee positions.

  5. Lightning owner Jeff Vinik backs film company pursuing global blockbusters

    Corporate

    TAMPA — Jeff Vinik's latest investment might be coming to a theater near you.

    Jeff Vinik, Tampa Bay Lightning owner, invested in a new movie company looking to appeal to a global audience. | [Times file photo]