December 04, 2015
As Congress moves toward passing a final fiscal year 2016 funding measure, HR Policy Association and a strong majority of the business community have escalated the push for a reversal of the NLRB joint employer standard as part of the bill, with an intensive lobbying effort and a letter signed by over forty organizations supporting such a measure. If included in the House bill, the provision would still face an uphill battle in the Senate and the threat of a likely presidential veto. The other "rider" drawing considerable support is a ban on DOL's fiduciary rule tightening conflict-of-interest restrictions on retirement advisers under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. The latter is expected to draw some Democratic support, with the joint employer issue shaping up more along partisan lines. The business community letter calls the NLRB's change to the standard "expansive and vague and [it] will negatively affect every business contract throughout the nation's economy, including franchisor-franchisee, contractor-subcontractor, and supplier-vendor relationships." The rider would bring the standard back to the threshold of direct and immediate control originally used to decide whether two or more employers are joint employers.