Too Many Beef Livers? NLRB Addresses How It Will Review 29,000 Comments on Its Proposed Joint Employer Rule

NRLB Ring too many beef livers avocadosToo much of a good thing can be a bad thing. For example, according to this article in Popular Science, consuming 240 avocados in one sitting would put the average man at risk of sudden death by potassium poisoning. (It doesn’t say how many avocados an above-average man could eat, but presumably the number is similar.) 

A similarly bad outcome can result from over-consumption of beef livers, although it would take approximately 431 pounds of beef livers before the toxicity of excessive vitamin A might cause a man to think he should have stopped after 430.

Lots of comments can overwhelm an administrative agency’s internal organs as well. As we discussed here, the NLRB has proposed a new regulation that would make it harder to establish joint employment under the National Labor Relations Act. In response to the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, the Board has received nearly 29,000 comments from interested organizations, unions, academics, business owners and individual workers (like Cindy, perhaps) about the proposed new rule.

To expedite the Board’s review of these comments, the Board is planning to engage a third party agency to sort and categorize the comments before the Board’s staff attorneys review them for substance. (No word on whether the Board would consider itself a joint employer of the third party sorters. Presumably not. Chuckle. Snort. Chortle.)

Democratic leadership has questioned the Board’s decision to outsource part of the review process, but NLRB Chairman John Ring responded with this letter, providing his assurance that the actual substantive review would be done by Board lawyers, not third party staffers.

So in other words, not much to see here. We have no idea how long it will take for the Board to complete its review of the nearly 29,000 comments, but Chairman Ring has vowed to complete the review as expeditiously as possible. When the review is complete, the Board will decide whether to revise the initial proposed rule, to adopt it, or to select what’s behind door #3.

Meanwhile, this may take a while so I am going back to my oversized platter of beef livers.

© 2019 Todd Lebowitz, posted on, Exploring Issues of Independent Contractor Misclassification and Joint Employment. All rights reserved.

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