Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Rule expected to be rescinded
On February 2, 2017 the House voted 236-187 for a resolution under the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to block Obama’s “blacklisting” rule. The “blacklisting” rule required employers bidding on federal contracts over $500,000 to disclose up to three years of violations and alleged violations of 14 different federal labor laws and similar state labor laws. Extra work was put on employers to determine a subcontractor’s or supplier’s compliance with these labor laws.
Under the CRA, Congress may pass a resolution of disapproval to prevent, with the full force of law, a federal agency from implementing a rule or issuing a rule that is substantially the same without congressional authorization. The resolution introduced by House and Senate leaders would remove the blacklisting rule from the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and prevent future administrations from promulgating a similar rule.
Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), chairwoman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, released the following passage of the resolution:
This flawed and unnecessary blacklisting rule has always been a solution in search of a problem. As we’ve said repeatedly, the best way to ensure fair pay and safe workplaces is to enforce the existing suspension and debarment system. This rule would make that system simply unworkable, which would hurt workers, taxpayers, small businesses, and our Armed Forces. Congress has a responsibility to put a stop to misguided rules, and today’s vote is an important step. Let’s reject this flawed rule and encourage the new administration to use the tools it already has to protect workers and hold contractors accountable.
The resolution now heads to the Senate, where it is expected to pass.