Text: H.R.3619 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (11/21/2003)


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[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 3619 Introduced in House (IH)]






108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 3619

  To amend the National Labor Relations Act to establish an efficient 
       system to enable employees to form, join, or assist labor 
 organizations, to provide for mandatory injunctions for unfair labor 
      practices during organizing efforts, and for other purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                           November 21, 2003

Mr. George Miller of California (for himself, Mr. Gephardt, Mr. Bishop 
  of New York, Mr. Kildee, Mr. Kucinich, Mr. Owens, Mr. Grijalva, Mr. 
 Davis of Illinois, Ms. Woolsey, Mr. Payne, Ms. McCollum, Mr. Tierney, 
   Mrs. McCarthy of New York, Mr. Andrews, Mr. Ryan of Ohio, Mr. Van 
   Hollen, Mr. Holt, Mr. Wu, Mr. Hinojosa, Mr. Kind, Ms. Pelosi, Mr. 
 Hoyer, Mr. Matsui, Ms. Kilpatrick, Mr. Holden, Ms. Carson of Indiana, 
 Ms. Schakowsky, Mr. Sabo, Mr. Michaud, Mr. Delahunt, Mr. Pallone, Mr. 
 Abercrombie, Mr. Peterson of Minnesota, Ms. Solis, Ms. Slaughter, Mr. 
Baca, Mr. Doyle, Mrs. Maloney, Mr. Sherman, Mr. Serrano, Mr. Gutierrez, 
   Mr. Hoeffel, Mr. McNulty, Ms. Linda T. Sanchez of California, Mr. 
  Hinchey, Mr. Baird, Mr. Rush, Mr. King of New York, Mr. Lynch, Ms. 
Millender-McDonald, Mr. Lantos, Mr. Allen, Mr. Rodriguez, Ms. DeLauro, 
Mr. Nadler, Mr. Brown of Ohio, Mr. Udall of New Mexico, Mr. Wexler, Mr. 
Levin, Mr. Weiner, Mr. Conyers, Mr. Jackson of Illinois, Mr. McGovern, 
 Mr. Stark, Mr. Evans, Mr. Sanders, Mr. Rahall, Mr. Deutsch, Ms. Lee, 
Ms. Corrine Brown of Florida, Mr. Cardoza, Mr. Meehan, Mr. Simmons, Mr. 
 Hastings of Florida, Mr. Langevin, Mr. Waxman, Mrs. Christensen, Mr. 
 Pascrell, Mrs. Jones of Ohio, Mr. Smith of New Jersey, Mr. Honda, and 
 Mr. Pastor) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the 
                Committee on Education and the Workforce

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
  To amend the National Labor Relations Act to establish an efficient 
       system to enable employees to form, join, or assist labor 
 organizations, to provide for mandatory injunctions for unfair labor 
      practices during organizing efforts, and for other purposes.

    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 ``Employee Free Choice Act''.

SEC. 2. STREAMLINING UNION CERTIFICATION.

    (a) In General.--Section 9(c) of the National Labor Relations Act 
(29 U.S.C. 159(c)) is amended by adding at the end the following:
    ``(6) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, whenever 
a petition shall have been filed by an employee or group of employees 
or any individual or labor organization acting in their behalf alleging 
that a majority of employees in a unit appropriate for the purposes of 
collective bargaining wish to be represented by an individual or labor 
organization for such purposes, the Board shall investigate the 
petition. If the Board finds that a majority of the employees in a unit 
appropriate for bargaining has signed authorizations designating the 
individual or labor organization specified in the petition as their 
bargaining representative and that no other individual or labor 
organization is currently certified or recognized as the exclusive 
representative of any of the employees in the unit, the Board shall not 
direct an election but shall certify the individual or labor 
organization as the representative described in subsection (a).
    ``(7) The Board shall develop guidelines and procedures for the 
designation by employees of a bargaining representative in the manner 
described in paragraph (6). Such guidelines and procedures shall 
include--
            ``(A) model collective bargaining authorization language 
        that may be used for purposes of making the designations 
        described in paragraph (6); and
            ``(B) procedures to be used by the Board to establish the 
        authenticity of signed authorizations designating bargaining 
        representatives.''.
    (b) Conforming Amendments.--
            (1) National labor relations board.--Section 3(b) of the 
        National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 153(b)) is amended, in 
        the second sentence--
                    (A) by striking ``and to'' and inserting ``to''; 
                and
                    (B) by striking ``and certify the results 
                thereof,'' and inserting ``, and to issue 
                certifications as provided for in that section,''.
            (2) Unfair labor practices.--Section 8(b) of the National 
        Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 158(b)) is amended--
                    (A) in paragraph (7)(B) by striking ``, or'' and 
                inserting ``or a petition has been filed under section 
                9(c)(6), or''; and
                    (B) in paragraph (7)(C) by striking ``when such a 
                petition has been filed'' and inserting ``when such a 
                petition other than a petition under section 9(c)(6) 
                has been filed''.

SEC. 3. FACILITATING INITIAL COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS.

    Section 8 of the National Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 158) is 
amended by adding at the end the following:
    ``(h) Whenever collective bargaining is for the purpose of 
establishing an initial agreement following certification or 
recognition, the provisions of subsection (d) shall be modified as 
follows:
            ``(1) Not later than 10 days after receiving a written 
        request for collective bargaining from an individual or labor 
        organization that has been newly organized or certified as a 
        representative as defined in section 9(a), or within such 
        further period as the parties agree upon, the parties shall 
        meet and commence to bargain collectively and shall make every 
        reasonable effort to conclude and sign a collective bargaining 
        agreement.
            ``(2) If after the expiration of the 90-day period 
        beginning on the date on which bargaining is commenced, or such 
        additional period as the parties may agree upon, the parties 
        have failed to reach an agreement, either party may notify the 
        Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service of the existence of 
        a dispute and request mediation. Whenever such a request is 
        received, it shall be the duty of the Service promptly to put 
        itself in communication with the parties and to use its best 
        efforts, by mediation and conciliation, to bring them to 
        agreement.
            ``(3) If after the expiration of the 30-day period 
        beginning on the date on which the request for mediation is 
        made under paragraph (2), or such additional period as the 
        parties may agree upon, the Service is not able to bring the 
        parties to agreement by conciliation, the Service shall refer 
        the dispute to an arbitration board established in accordance 
        with such regulations as may be prescribed by the Service. The 
        arbitration panel shall render a decision settling the dispute 
        and such decision shall be binding upon the parties for a 
        period of 2 years, unless amended during such period by written 
        consent of the parties.''.

SEC. 4. STRENGTHENING ENFORCEMENT.

    (a) Injunctions Against Unfair Labor Practices During Organizing 
Drives.--
            (1) In general.--Section 10(l) of the National Labor 
        Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 160(l)) is amended--
                    (A) in the second sentence, by striking ``If, after 
                such'' and inserting the following:
    ``(2) If, after such''; and
                    (B) by striking the first sentence and inserting 
                the following:
    ``(1) Whenever it is charged--
            ``(A) that any employer--
                    ``(i) discharged or otherwise discriminated against 
                an employee in violation of subsection (a)(3) of 
                section 8;
                    ``(ii) threatened to discharge or to otherwise 
                discriminate against an employee in violation of 
                subsection (a)(1) of section 8; or
                    ``(iii) engaged in any other unfair labor practice 
                within the meaning of subsection (a)(1) that 
                significantly interferes with, restrains, or coerces 
                employees in the exercise of the rights guaranteed in 
                section 7;
        while employees of that employer were seeking representation by 
        a labor organization or during the period after a labor 
        organization was recognized as a representative defined in 
        section 9(a) until the first collective bargaining contract is 
        entered into between the employer and the representative; or
            ``(B) that any person has engaged in an unfair labor 
        practice within the meaning of subparagraph (A), (B) or (C) of 
        section 8(b)(4), section 8(e), or section 8(b)(7);
the preliminary investigation of such charge shall be made forthwith 
and given priority over all other cases except cases of like character 
in the office where it is filed or to which it is referred.''.
            (2) Conforming amendment.--Section 10(m) of the National 
        Labor Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 160(m)) is amended by inserting 
        ``under circumstances not subject to section 10(l)'' after 
        ``section 8''.
    (b) Remedies for Violations.--
            (1) Backpay.--Section 10(c) of the National Labor Relations 
        Act (29 U.S.C. 160(c)) is amended by striking ``And provided 
        further,'' and inserting ``Provided further, That if the Board 
        finds that an employer has discriminated against an employee in 
        violation of subsection (a)(3) of section 8 while employees of 
        the employer were seeking representation by a labor 
        organization, or during the period after a labor organization 
        was recognized as a representative defined in subsection (a) of 
        section 9 until the first collective bargaining contract was 
        entered into between the employer and the representative, the 
        Board in such order shall award the employee back pay and, in 
        addition, 2 times that amount as liquidated damages: Provided 
        further,''.
            (2) Civil penalties.--Section 12 of the National Labor 
        Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 162) is amended--
                    (A) by striking ``Any'' and inserting ``(a) Any''; 
                and
                    (B) by adding at the end the following:
    ``(b) Any employer who willfully or repeatedly commits any unfair 
labor practice within the meaning of subsections (a)(1) or (a)(3) of 
section 8 while employees of the employer are seeking representation by 
a labor organization or during the period after a labor organization 
has been recognized as a representative defined in subsection (a) of 
section 9 until the first collective bargaining contract is entered 
into between the employer and the representative shall, in addition to 
any make-whole remedy ordered, be subject to a civil penalty of not to 
exceed $20,000 for each violation. In determining the amount of any 
penalty under this section, the Board shall consider the gravity of the 
unfair labor practice and the impact of the unfair labor practice on 
the charging party, on other persons seeking to exercise rights 
guaranteed by this Act, or on the public interest.''.
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