Roe Statement: Hearing on "Expanding Joint Employer Status: What Does it Mean for Workers and Job Creators?"
For most franchise employers, it’s tough staying afloat in even the best of times. It’s especially challenging when Washington bureaucrats change the rules in the middle of the game. In recent months, it’s become clear the Obama National Labor Relations Board is determined to rewrite a franchise model that has served workers, employers, and consumers well for decades.
At the center of this effort is Richard Griffin. As the agency’s general counsel, Mr. Griffin has encouraged the board to blur the lines of responsibility between the franchisor and franchisee. Most recently, he determined McDonalds Inc. is a joint employer with its franchisees, a decision that no doubt sent a shockwave across the country. This radical effort is detached from reality for two important reasons.
First, it pretends the franchise business model doesn’t exist. Since 1984, the NLRB has applied a straight-forward test to determine whether two separate entities are joint employers of a business establishment. The board analyzes whether the alleged employers share control over essential conditions of employment, such as hiring, firing, discipline, supervision, and direction of employees. Control over these matters must be direct and immediate.
The current standard makes perfect sense when one considers how the franchise model works in the real world. As chief executive officer of CKE Restaurants – a company that includes iconic brands like Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr. – Andrew Puzder is no stranger to the franchise business or this subcommittee. Here is how he has described the franchise business model:
Make no mistake, the current standard reflects the way franchise businesses have been owned and operated for decades. So why the sudden effort to dismantle policies that work? As the Wall Street Journal noted in reaction to Mr. Griffin’s decision:
The franchiser/franchisee relationship is built on a division of roles and responsibilities. The franchiser owns a unique system, which it licenses and protects as a brand. The franchisee operates an independent business under the brand's trademarks at one or more locations as a licensee. … Franchisees independently choose who they hire, the number of people they hire, the wages and benefits they pay, the training that such employees undergo, the labor practices they use, how their employees are monitored and evaluated, and the circumstances under which they're promoted, disciplined or fired.
Which leads to the second reason why this radical effort is so detached from reality – it fails to recognize the difficult challenges facing workers in the Obama economy. Our nation remains mired in a jobs crisis. Workers are frustrated. After six years of President Obama’s failed policies, I am frustrated too. Stocks prices on Wall Street are breaking new records while wages on Main Street remain flat. Meanwhile, the prices for essential goods and services like food, gas, and health insurance have gone up.
This is a bonanza for trial lawyers who will be able to shake down the parent company for alleged labor violations at franchisees whose pockets aren't as deep. The other beneficiary is Big Labor. … Under Mr. Griffin's law, they can leap-frog their direct managers to corporate headquarters, which are more vulnerable to political pressure and less sensitive to local markets.
That’s not right and working families deserve better. Yet today we are discussing an effort that will force small businesses to close their doors, or at the very least, discourage new small businesses from being created. Workers will once again be on the losing end of this Big Labor bailout and at a time they can least afford it.
I suspect some of my colleagues will protest today’s hearing. It will likely be noted the board hasn’t rendered a decision and suggested the committee is once again putting the cart before the horse. We’ve heard our colleagues sing that tune before and each time it has been followed by a radical shift in board policy.
The American people deserve to know what the federal government is up to and how it will affect their families. Hiding the truth behind some process nonsense isn’t fair to the men and women who will have to live by the rules issued by this federal agency. Today’s hearing will help shine a light on those consequences and I hope encourage the NLRB to change course.
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To learn more about these hearings, or to watch live webcasts, visit http://edworkforce.house.gov/hearings.
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The NFL Season started this past weekend and every team has the same goal…win the Super Bowl. Leading up to the season there has been countless hours, days, weeks, and months that have gone into planning, strategizing and putting together a winning formula. They didn’t just show up on opening day and wing it. We all know what would happen if they did. Heck…every NFL team started planning for this season the day after their season ended last year.
Life and sports have so much in common. When we start our year we really need to approach it just like a new season in football, with the goal of winning our Super Bowl. The definition of winning a Super Bowl may be different for everyone, but the steps it takes to give us the best chance at accomplishing our goals is the same. We need to plan, strategize and take the time to put together our winning formula before the new season starts…don’t just show up on opening day and wing it. If we do, we are going to get CRUSHED!!!!
In Business, this means putting together a Business Plan…in Life it is putting together a Life Plan. It is about taking the time to put together a plan for all the areas of our F-5 (Faith, Family, Friends, Fitness, and Finance). So many of us wait until the New Year before we take time to even consider what we are going to do to Win. I am here to tell you if we wait until then, we are winging it and we are going to get CRUSHED.
I know it may seem crazy to be thinking about it now, but we’re already putting together Intero’s 2015 Business Plan. Heck…we already have our first draft done. Yes… 4 months before the New Year. So why would we do that? Because we know that we need to start executing on our 2015 plan now, because we know we won’t see the results of our activities for 3 to 4 month…January. And if we wait until January to put together our plan we will not start to see the results of that plan until March or April and our season will be over before it even gets started.
Don’t wait until the end of the year and do what most other people do…don’t wing it. Don’t wait until the end of the game when you have to throw up the Hail Mary in desperation. If you wait until then it is pretty much hopeless. Start it today and make a commitment to have it finished by October 1st.
As you put together your plan remember the following:
A play = your day
A touchdown drive = your week
A game = your month
A season = your year
A Super Bowl = your life
Take the time to visualize your Super Bowl Winning Strategy. Then put together your plan for winning the Season (F5 Plans). Then set goals and strategies for each month. Then take those goals and strategies and put them in your calendar. Then show up every day and execute on every play (what your schedule tells you to do) with all of your effort and focus. Do this and you stand the best chance at winning a Super Bowl.
Small Businesses: Waters of the U.S. Rule Just Another Confusing and Economically Detrimental Power Grab
This week, the House will vote on the Waters of the United States Regulatory Overreach Protection Act (HR 5078), a common-sense bill that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers from finalizing their proposed rule that would redefine “waters of the United States” under the Clean Water Act.
In April, the Obama Administration proposed this “waters of the U.S.” rule, which would lead to an unprecedented expansion of federal regulatory jurisdiction. Under this expansive proposed rule, all tributaries – even small streams and ponds that only flow irregularly or when it rains – and all adjacent waters and wetlands, fall under this definition as federally-controlled waters and all the bureaucratic rules, onerous regulations, and costly requirements that entails. This includes small, temporary bodies of water, such as ditches, that may be dry for much of the year. The rule would be particularly harmful for farms, of which about 95% are small businesses; and 97% of all farms are family farms.
Through hearings and correspondence, the Small Business Committee has heard directly from small businesses that this rule creates more confusion and would be detrimental on many levels. Surprisingly, the EPA did not conduct a Small Business Advocacy Review panel to get small business input on the proposed rule, and the agencies did not prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis assessing small business impacts despite the fact small businesses will need to comply with the rule. Here are just a few of the comments from a May 29 Committee hearing:
Jack Field, Owner, Lazy JF Cattle Co., Yakima, WA:
“I don’t think the negative impacts of this definition can be overstated. As a producer and the head of a state association, I can tell you that after reading the proposal rule it has the potential to impact every aspect of my operation and others like it by dictating land use activities in Washington state from 2,687 miles away. I would also feel confident in saying that I believe it will actually have a detrimental impact on water quality.”
“Being the owner of a small business myself in the cattle industry and knowing the detrimental impact this regulation will have on my operation, it is appalling the agencies could assert that this regulation will not have a ‘significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.’ It is clear to me that the rule’s primary impact will be on small landowners across the country.”
Alan Parks, Vice President, Memphis Stone and Gravel Co., Memphis, TN:
“EPA’s economic analysis of this rule does not accurately show what businesses like ours will end up paying if this rule is finalized. It is not even close. One [National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association] member calculated that to do the additional mitigation of a stream required under this rule would be more than $100,000; this is just for one site in our industry. This is more than EPA has estimated the stream mitigation costs are for entire states in its economic analysis.”
“While there are many inefficiencies in the current regulatory system, adding vague terms and undefined concepts to an already complicated program is not the way to improve the process. For example, EPA states groundwater is excluded from this rule, but the rule also says that shallow subsurface connections are included. Does this mean that water that fills our pits is jurisdictional?”
Tom Woods, President, Woods Custom Homes, Blue Springs, MO:
“These definitions will leave home builders in a constant state of confusion. As a small business owner, this unpredictability will make it difficult for my business to comply and grow. The agencies suggest that the rule provides clarity; however all it does is produce more questions. Unfortunately, we have to rely on the agencies and costly consultants for answers.”
“I am a businessman. I need to know the rules. I can’t play a guessing game of ‘is it federally jurisdictional?’ But that’s just what this proposal would force me to do. Builders would face new, costly delays just waiting for the agencies to determine if a road ditch is a ‘Water of the United States.’ The only winners are the lawyers, as this rule will certainly lead to increased litigation.”
***MEDIA ADVISORY*** Hearings to Examine Joint Employer Status Under NLRA and Oversight of Department of Education
On Tuesday, September 9th at 10:00 a.m., the Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions, chaired by Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN), will hold a hearing entitled, “Expanding Joint Employer Status: What Does it Mean for Workers and Job Creators?” The hearing will provide members an opportunity to examine efforts by the National Labor Relations Board to rewrite how the agency determines joint employer status under the National Labor Relations Act.
On Wednesday, September 10th at 10:00 a.m, the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training, chaired by Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), and the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education, chaired by Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN), will hold a joint hearing entitled, "Improving Department of Education Policies and Programs Through Independent Oversight." Members will discuss recommendations from the Government Accountability Office and the Department of Education Office of Inspector General on ways to improve department services and save taxpayer dollars.
To learn more about these hearings, or to watch live webcasts, visit http://edworkforce.house.gov/hearings.
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There are 4 kinds of fats:
- Monounsaturated (Healthy)
- Polyunsaturated (Healthy)
- Saturated (Unhealthy in excess, but important to the cells in very small amounts)
- Transfats (Unhealthy and extremely toxic)
The brain is made up of about 60 percent fat and in order for it to function properly, we need to consume the healthy fats. Everyone is a little different in their needs for fats depending on activity to name just one factor; however “good” fat IS important! These fats which keep you healthy, come from the earth and the ocean. They are minimally processed.
Fish and shell fish, along with the fats coming from the fish, such as fish oils and cod liver oils, are excellent sources of healthy fats, along with fats which come from the earth such as nuts and nut oils. These include extra virgin olive oil, virgin coconut oil, almond oil, macadamia nut oil and grape seed oil.
Now for the bad news…
Saturated fat comes from land animals (and is even present in olive oil and coconut oils). In moderation, it’s ok; in fact as mentioned, necessary, (5% of total fat can be from Saturated fats).
Transfats however are the real danger. You’ll find man-made saturated/hydrogenated fats and man-altered transfats in foods like crisco, margarine and many bread and dessert products. Look at the ingredients list for the name fully or partially hydrogenated oils. Oils that are hydrogenated and chemically made lead to decreased cell membrane transport (which diminishes nutrients’ ability to be absorbed and used by the cells) and inflammation.
Something to know…
The half-life of transfats is 51 days. What that means is after 51 days of eating no transfats, you still need another 51 days to complete the clearing and even then, a 25% residual remains! For example, after you eat a bag of potato chips or a serving of French fries, the transfats remain in your body for 102 days and can cause improper nerve function, increased inflammation and poor cell communication!
The half-life of the omega-3 fatty acids found in cod liver oil, tuna oil, and salmon oils is 18 days. Additionally, adding 1 tbsp of sesame oil into your diet every day is great for improving skin and increasing energy. Consider replacing all transfats and most saturated fats with healthy ocean and earth oils.
Careful not to go too crazy here though, fat is dense and a little goes a long way calorically.
That dreaded email inbox. It haunts your dreams. It’s hard to get away from it. From the second you open your computer, “ping, ping, ping.” Email after email popping up for you to respond to. With all that responding, how do you even manage to get anything else done during the day? And don’t get me started on searching for archives or attachments; “Remember that email I sent you two weeks ago about that house?” Searching every single email in your inbox the last two weeks will take all day.
Well today, your problems just might be solved with Slack. Slack was developed specifically for team communication, putting everything in one place, making it instantly searchable, and available wherever you go.
Working with another agent on the sale of a property? Open a channel on the slack app with them and start the conversation even add in your client if appropriate. This channel can include messages, files, comments, images, videos, links, Twitter, Dropbox or Google Drive just to name a few. That means you can upload a contract have your teammates review it and see their notes all in the same place. No need to get out of one space just to log into another. No more need to question if this the most current version. It’s all right there in the Slack app ready for you to review, comment and move forward. The meeting continues and your standard email inbox can be saved for outside communication.
Slack is easily searchable too. I really like this feature since so many times I find myself going back into my old emails to find a sample post card, or need to reference a specific instruction on a property. Slack makes it easy to find both of these things in their system. It’s definitely communication for the 21st century.
Teams are using this app and increasing their productivity all over the world. Check out one of their success stories below.
WASHINGTON, D.C. –Senators John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV (D-WV) and Senator John Thune (R-SD), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, will soon introduce the Surface Transportation Board Reauthorization Act of 2014. The bill aims to improve the Surface Transportation Board (STB) by making it more efficient and accessible. The legislation follows several months of serious freight rail service delays and backlogs.
“It is far past time that America had a competitive and efficient rail transportation network.&...
As witnesses made clear, the president’s health care law is undermining the success of the nation’s schools and workplaces –
Hoosier business owners and education officials aired out their concerns about the Affordable Care Act to Congress without having to go all the way to Washington D.C. … The chambers there are clearly smaller than the halls of Congress, but that’s exactly the way committee members wanted it. Several panelists were concerned about how ACA has been affecting their budgets.
- The most significant impact is on our special needs students. These students need and want consistency … It is best for our special needs students to have the same bus driver for their routes. Unfortunately, we now must split the route between two drivers. By using different drivers for the same route, our special needs students are subject to constant change which is uncomfortable for our special needs students and not in their best interests. – Mr. Danny Tanoos, Superintendent, Vigo County School Corporation, Terre Haute, IN
- Like many community colleges our funding is very limited. It does not allow us to absorb large unfunded mandates such as any employee who reaches 30 hours being offered health insurance. We would have to pass along such increases on the backs of students by increasing tuition. As a result many of those who are at the lowest income levels trying to improve their lives would no longer be able to afford college. – Mr. Tom Snyder, President, Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana, Indianapolis, IN
- The Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act (PPACA) has had and continues to have a severe and disproportionately disruptive effect on our high performing school district. We have identified three categories in which these negative effects have occurred in our school district. There is the impact on our students, the impact on our employees, and the impact on the school district itself. These intertwined and interactive effects, taken together, are serious now and appear to be increasing in their severity over time. – Mr. Michael Shafer, Chief Financial Officer, Zionsville Community Schools, Zionsville, IN
- In summary, since the ACA took effect, our company and employees have seen premiums increase dramatically while deductibles and out-of-pocket costs have been raised, all during a period when the overall health of our employees has improved … From the experience of IDS, I can say that the Affordable Care Act is anything but affordable for our company and employees. – Mr. Mark DeFabis, President, Integrated Distribution Services, Plainfield, IN
- We offer health insurance to our full time employees although not affordable by government standards … This cost to our business is roughly in the area of $2.42 to $3.23 per hour per employee depending on hours worked. To meet the proposed guidance of not to exceed 9.5% of income that cost would move into the $2.87 to $5.15 range per hour per employee! Representing an 18 to 59% raise in cost per hour per employee. Where is the AFFORDABLE in this act? – Mr. Daniel Wolfe, President, Wolfe’s Auto Auctions, Terre Haute, IN
- The Affordable Care Act’s reporting mandates will absolutely ‘bury’ our Human Resources Department … The forms must be filed electronically for companies with over 250 employees, such as Draper. However, there is no guidance or process yet established to explain how to do this … Our HR Department’s worst fear is that the final versions will be made available on December 15, with a December 31 deadline for submission! – Mr. Nate LaMar, International Regional Manager, Draper, Inc., Spiceland, IN
Congressman Luke Messer (R-IN) noted during the hearing, “Our nation’s school children and hourly workers shouldn’t be forced to pay the price of that law.” Chairman Roe echoed the sentiment: “Our children and working families deserve better."
To read witness testimony, opening statements, or watch an archived webcast of the hearing, visitwww.edworkforce.house.gov/hearings.
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Two weeks ago I shared thoughts on the vital nature of trust and its impact on business relationships. In short, relationships built on trust will flourish, while a breach of trust can ruin associations.
I remain moved by the book, Unbeatable Mind, by former Navy SEAL Commander Mark Divine, and want to share his 12 simple steps for developing trustworthiness.
- Talk straight – avoid spins, lies, double talk and flattery.
- Demonstrate respect – take your eyes off yourself, and put them on your teammates. Show that you care.
- Create transparency – avoid withholding information and keeping secrets unless absolutely necessary to protect intellectual property or to prevent someone from getting hurt.
- Right wrongs quickly – we all screw up, so admit it, and repair things as fast as possible.
- Show loyalty – don’t take all the credit or sell others out. Don’t gossip!
- Deliver results!
- Get better every day!
- Clarify expectations – ensure that the explicit and implicit tasks of your mission and those that you delegate are crystal clear.
- Practice accountability – start with yourself, and then demand it of your team and organization. But the buck always stops with you.
- Listen first – practice authentic listening.
- Keep communication with brutal honesty – use the brief and debrief process to keep communicating at all levels so you can always be learning and helping others learn.
- Learn to trust others by delegating and giving more responsibility and then providing support when the inevitable failures occur.
Of course, these steps are basic to human decency and sound decorum and, collectively, they light the path to trustworthiness. No virtue comes automatically; each can be developed with practice and attention.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller, IV, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation today released the following statement in response to reports that Home Depot may have suffered a significant data breach and that celebrities’ Apple iCloud accounts have been hacked.
“The Home Depot breach is the latest in a string of data security breaches that have put millions of consumers at risk of financial harm and exposed their sensitive personal information. The massive data breach is just one more example of the need fo...
Roe Statement: Hearing on "The Effects of the President’s Health Care Law on Indiana’s Classrooms and Workplaces"
Before joining Congress, I spent more than 30 years practicing medicine. As a doctor I experienced firsthand a health care system that is the envy of the world, one that has helped improve the lives of countless men, women, and children. But I also learned our health care system isn’t perfect.
In many ways health care is too costly, too bureaucratic, and far too many families lack access to the care they need. Health care reform has long been an urgent national priority, and it’s one of the reasons why I decided to run for Congress. Unfortunately, the president’s health care law is not the right prescription for reform. In fact, it’s making these challenges worse.
Under the president’s plan, health care costs are going up, not down; full-time jobs are being destroyed, not created; and people are losing the health care plan they like, not keeping it like they were promised. These harmful consequences are playing out in communities across the country.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia recently surveyed area businesses to learn how the law was affecting their workplaces. Roughly 18 percent of businesses said they are cutting jobs and employees and another 18 percent said they were shifting more workers to part-time hours. Additionally, a majority of employers changing their health plans because of the law are passing more costs onto employees. Federal Reserve authorities in Atlanta and New York report similar findings.
The law is hurting not only businesses, but our classrooms as well. Higher costs, fewer full-time jobs, lost wages – these problems are plaguing schools nationwide. A survey by the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources found many institutions are passing more health care costs onto their employees. Students will ultimately lose as schools grapple with the law’s added costs and burdensome mandates.
Our children and working families deserve better. It is clear we need to set aside the president’s health care law and start over with real reform that will lower costs and expand access.
In the meantime, we need to take responsible steps that will provide relief to schools and workplaces. That is precisely what the House of Representatives is determined to do. I want to thank my colleague, Representative Luke Messer, for helping to lead that important effort.
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Messer Statement: Hearing on “The Effects of the President’s Health Care Law on Indiana’s Classrooms and Workplaces”
Put simply, the Federal government should not be taxing schools and small businesses to pay for the President’s health care law. It just isn’t right. And, if we really care about our economy and our nation’s future we will do something about it.
Dave Adams, the Superintendent of Shelbyville Central Schools, first brought this issue to my attention early last year when he said the employer mandate will cost his schools $794,000 each year. Bob Yoder, Assistant Superintendent of Southern Hancock School Corporation, estimated its price tag at $450,000 per year. Their stories are not unique, unfortunately.
That’s why I have introduced legislation to exempt schools from this onerous provision. We can’t fund the President’s health care law at the expense of education.
Small businesses are being harmed, too. Businesses statewide have been forced to reduce worker hours and scale-back their workforce to balance new budget constraints imposed by the law. That’s why I have introduced legislation that will exempt most small business from this tax, too.
Nate LaMar, the International Regional Manager of Draper, Incorporated in Spiceland, rightly notes that the law’s fees and taxes don’t stop with the employer mandate. There are very strong feelings about the President’s health care law on both sides of the aisle. I respect the views of those who believe deeply that it is the best way to address the challenges in our health care system.
I would hope that most could agree, however, that our nation’s school children and hourly workers should be forced to pay the price of that law.
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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration proposes an aquaculture plan for the federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico
On August 28, 2014 the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) released a proposed rule for the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council’s Fishery Management Plan for Regulating Offshore Marine Aquaculture in the Gulf of Mexico.