New NLRB General Counsel Quickly Changes Direction

Volume: 20 | Issue: 9
February 4, 2021

In his first days in office, the new Acting General Counsel to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or Board) has made it clear that a new direction will be taken by his office. As we discussed earlier this year, NLRB General Counsel, Peter B. Robb, was dismissed by President Biden on Inauguration Day, and Peter Sung Ohr has been named Acting General Counsel in his place.

While the General Counsel cannot change Board law, he has a great deal of influence on which cases are investigated and prosecuted by the NLRB Field Offices and which cases, therefore, end up before the Board. Upon taking office, Mr. Ohr quickly rescinded 10 General Counsel Memoranda issued by Mr. Robb that impact how and what the Field Offices investigate and what position they take in certain types of cases. Mr. Ohr contends that such memoranda should be rescinded because they “are either inconsistent with the [policy of the National Labor Relations Act] and/or Board law, or are no longer necessary.”

For example, Mr. Robb believed a neutrality agreement between Embassy Suites and UNITE HERE Local 8 violated the NLRA and was prepared, in that case, to take the position that the Board should adopt a new, stricter standard for neutrality agreements. Mr. Ohr disagrees and directed the Region to dismiss this case. As such, the Board, which may have agreed with Mr. Robb, will not have the opportunity to consider the matter of neutrality agreements at this time.

If you have questions about these changes at the NLRB, please contact a KZA attorney.

KZA Employer Report articles are for general information only; they are not intended and should not be construed to be legal advice. Reading or replying to such articles does not establish an attorney-client relationship. In addition, because the subject matters and applicable laws discussed in Employer Report articles are often in a state of change and not always applicable to every type of business entity or organization, readers should consult with counsel before making decisions based on the same.

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