S 217

112th CONGRESS
1st Session

S. 217

To amend the National Labor Relations Act to ensure the right of employees to a secret ballot election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

January 27, 2011

Mr. DEMINT (for himself, Mr. ALEXANDER, Mr. BARRASSO, Mr. BURR, Mr. CHAMBLISS, Mr. COCHRAN, Mr. ENZI, Mr. GRAHAM, Mr. INHOFE, Mr. KYL, Mr. MCCAIN, Mr. MORAN, Mr. PAUL, Mr. RISCH, Mr. SHELBY, Mr. THUNE, Mr. VITTER, Mr. WICKER, Mr. ROBERTS, Mr. CORKER, and Mr. CORNYN) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions


A BILL

To amend the National Labor Relations Act to ensure the right of employees to a secret ballot election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the `Secret Ballot Protection Act of 2011'.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:

      (1) The right of employees under the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 151 et seq.) to choose whether to be represented by a labor organization by way of secret ballot election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board is among the most important protections afforded under Federal labor law.

      (2) The right of employees to choose by secret ballot is the only method that ensures a choice free of coercion, intimidation, irregularity, or illegality.

      (3) The recognition of a labor organization by using a private agreement, rather than a secret ballot election overseen by the National Labor Relations Board, threatens the freedom of employees to choose whether to be represented by a labor organization, and severely limits the ability of the National Labor Relations Board to ensure the protection of workers.

SEC. 3. NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS ACT.

    (a) Recognition of Representative-

      (1) IN GENERAL- Section 8(a)(2) of the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 158(a)(2)) is amended by inserting before the colon the following: `or to recognize or bargain collectively with a labor organization that has not been selected by a majority of such employees in a secret ballot election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board in accordance with section 9'.

      (2) APPLICATION- The amendment made by paragraph (1) shall not apply to collective bargaining relationships in which a labor organization with majority support was lawfully recognized prior to the date of enactment of this Act.

    (b) Election Required-

      (1) IN GENERAL- Section 8(b) of the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 158(b)) is amended--

        (A) in paragraph (6), by striking `and' at the end;

        (B) in paragraph (7), by striking `section 8(b).' and inserting `section 8(b);' and

        (C) by adding at the end the following:

      `(8) to cause or attempt to cause an employer to recognize or bargain collectively with a representative of a labor organization that has not been selected by a majority of such employees in a secret ballot election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board in accordance with section 9.'.

      (2) APPLICATION- The amendment made by paragraph (1) shall not apply to collective bargaining relationships that were recognized prior to the date of enactment of this Act.

    (c) Secret Ballot Election- Section 9(a) of the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 159(a)) is amended--

      (1) by striking `Representatives' and inserting `(1) Representatives';

      (2) by inserting after `designated or selected' the following: `by a secret ballot election conducted by the National Labor Relations Board in accordance with this section'; and

      (3) by adding at the end the following:

    `(2) The secret ballot election requirement under paragraph (1) shall not apply to collective bargaining relationships that were recognized before the date of the enactment of the Secret Ballot Protection Act of 2011.'.

SEC. 4. REGULATIONS AND AUTHORITY.

    (a) Regulations- Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, the National Labor Relations Board shall review and revise all regulations promulgated prior to such date of enactment to implement the amendments made by this Act.

    (b) Authority- Nothing in this Act (or the amendments made by this Act) shall be construed to limit or otherwise diminish the remedial authority of the National Labor Relations Board.

END