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***MEDIA ADVISORY*** Field Hearings to Examine Bureaucratic Effort to Undermine Franchise Businesses

The Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions, chaired by Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN), will hold two field hearings next week to examine efforts by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that would dramatically alter the way franchise businesses operate.

Approximately 757,000 franchise businesses currently operate across the country, employing more than eight million workers. Independently owned and managed, these small businesses have encouraged job creation and helped countless individuals realize the dream of owning a business. Despite working well for employers, employees, and consumers, the franchise business model is now at risk of being dismantled by the federal National Labor Relations Board.

NLRB General Counsel Richard Griffin is pushing the agency to blur the lines of responsibility between the franchisee and franchisor by considering both to be “joint employers.” This new standard would leave the franchise small business owner with less freedom to operate his or her own business. The NLRB may extend a similar standard to other businesses outside the franchise industry, such as contractors and subcontractors, resulting in severe disruptions to countless businesses across the country.

At an oversight hearing, witnesses explained such a change would threaten established business relationships and cause “significant economic upheaval,” resulting in lost jobs and fewer opportunities for entrepreneurs to own their own businesses. The field hearings will provide members an opportunity to learn more about the ramifications of expanding the long-standing joint employer standard. Details for the two hearings are as follows:
  • On Tuesday, August 25 at 10:00 a.m. CDT, a hearing entitled, “Redefining ‘Employer’ and the Impact on Alabama’s Workers and Small Business Owners,” will take place at the University of South Alabama Student Center Ballroom, 350 Campus Drive in Mobile, Alabama. Witnesses to be announced. Media interested in attending the field hearing must RSVP to Seth Morrow at seth.morrow@mail.house.gov.
     
  • On Thursday, August 27 at 10:00 a.m. EDT, a hearing entitled, “Redefining ‘Employer’ and the Impact on Georgia’s Workers and Small Business Owners,” will take place at the Coastal Georgia Center, 113 Live Oak Room and 115 Cypress Room, 305 Fahm Street in Savannah, Georgia. Witnesses to be announced. Media interested in attending the field hearing must RSVP to Mary Carpenter at mary.carpenter@mail.house.gov.

To learn more about these hearings, visit /hearings.

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