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Tipton Votes to Create Certainty for Nation's Small Businesses

November 7, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON D.C. — Congressman Scott Tipton (CO-03) voted to create more stability and clarity for small business owners and their employees by replacing the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) broadly expanded definition of “joint employer” with the original definition that had been successfully used at NLRB for decades. The Save Local Business Act (H.R. 3441) passed with a vote of 242-181. 

In 2015, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a decision that revised the joint employer standard, claiming that companies sharing only “indirect” or “potential” control over another’s workforce may be considered joint employers. The ruling has had far-reaching impacts, complicating the areas of responsibility and daily operations for small businesses across the nation. For example, under the expanded definition, a restaurant that contracts for janitorial services or even food deliveries would be responsible for workplace violations or labor practices of those subcontracted companies. 

A 2016 Department of Labor interpretation of the “joint employment” concept under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) further broadened the definition of a “joint employer,” setting a legal precedent that continues to cause uncertainty for small businesses.

The Save Local Business Act will amend the NLRB and FLSA definition of “joint employer” to restore the concept of “direct” and “significant” control over essential terms and conditions of employment. Restoring the definition of “joint employer” will give small business owners more certainty and freedom and provide more stability, especially for local franchisees and any business that utilizes subcontractors.

Of the passage of The Save Local Business Act, Tipton said, “Small businesses employ the vast majority of the U.S. workforce, and provide opportunities to live and prosper across Colorado’s 3rd District. As in the case of ‘joint employer,’ overreaching regulations written by Washington bureaucrats oftentimes hurt small businesses’ ability to succeed, in many cases costing communities vital jobs. As a former small business owner, I have dealt with this firsthand, and am proud to support legislation that will correct a harmful, confusing regulation, so that business owners and their employees are better able to succeed.”