June 03, 2016
In the latest effort to connect federal contracts with employment policy, the House rejected an amendment offered to the Department of Energy funding bill that would have created an "Office of Good Jobs" at the Department, which would ensure the Department's contracts and regulations encourage the creation of "decently paid jobs, collective bargaining rights, and responsible employment practices." The amendment, offered by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), was opposed by HR Policy and other trade associations, and was defeated by a vote of 245 to 174, with eight Democrats voting against the amendment. The Ellison amendment, which will likely be offered to other funding bills, would have required the DOE to make subjective determinations concerning contractor workplace policies, including wages, collective bargaining, and certain employment compliance practices that are were not defined. Separately, the House Appropriations Subcommittee voted to block funding to implement the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's EEO-1 proposal that would require employers to annually report compensation data. The HR Policy-supported amendment, which was offered by Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD) during a markup of Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations bill, was adopted on a voice vote.