Yesterday, the NLRB issued its annual summary regarding case production for the fiscal year which ended on September 30, 2010.  In the 2010 fiscal year, the Board issued 315 decisions, 118 of which were decided in the month of August alone.  August was particularly productive because the Board sought to resolve as many cases as possible prior to the expiration of Peter Schaumber’s term as a member of the Board.  At the close of the fiscal year, the Board had 264 cases pending before it, which reflects a 20% increase from the 193 cases pending at beginning of the fiscal year.  The Board has also resolved 70 of the 96 cases pending before the courts at the time the Supreme Court issued its decision in New Process Steel denying the Board authority to issue decisions with only two members.

In addition, the press release highlighted notable decisions issued by the Board this past year.  They included:

– Resolution of the oldest unfair labor practice case at the Board, KenMor Electric Company (formerly known as Houston Stafford), a Texas case involving an association of non-union electrical contractors that arrived at the Board in 2001. The Board found that the association violated the Act by maintaining a job application referral system that interfered with the statutory rights of job applicants who were union members and “salts".

– Resolution of the oldest election case at the Board, Independence Residences, in which the Board found that a union victory in a 2003 election at a New York home for disabled workers should be certified, notwithstanding a state law that prohibited the employer’s use of state funds for union-related activities.

– The Board’s determination that a union protest was lawful activity in United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, Local Union No. 1506, where union members held large banners announcing labor disputes in front of secondary employers in Arizona.

– The Board’s determination that a union’s practice of requiring a dues objector to lodge objections every year, rather than granting a permanent reduction in dues, was unlawful, in International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, AFL–CIO.

The grant of review in a case, Lamon Gasket Co., that will reconsider a 2007 Board decision (Dana Corp., 351 NLRB 434). Under Dana, when an employer agrees to voluntarily recognize a union based on signed authorization cards, it may advise employees that they have a 45 day window to file a petition for an election to decertify the union or to support a rival union. If it does not give employees this notice, any contract negotiated with the recognized union will not serve to bar a future election petition during the life of the contract. The Board also invited briefs from any interested parties in the case.

In foreshadowing what to expect in the 2011 fiscal year, the Board’s recent press release notes that cases still pending resolution by the Board deal with issues such as:

the immigration status of workers who were victims of unfair labor practices, union access to employer property, electronic posting of Board remedial notices, and compound interest on back pay awards.

Stay tuned, as we will be providing information, insights and resources on these issues as the Board addresses them.