RILA issues statement in response to the release of a final “persuader” rule from the U.S. Department of Labor

Arlington , VA, 2016-Mar-25 — /EPR Retail News/ — ​​​​​​​​​​The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) issued the following statement in response to the release of a final “persuader” rule from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).

The rule effectively eliminates the “advice exception” under the Labor-Management Reporting Disclosure Act (LMRDA). Historically, under the LMRDA, employers have only been required to report to DOL the engagement of consultants during an organizing campaign if the consultants directly communicate with employees. Consultants who simply provided managers with advice on how to properly communicate with their employees did not trigger such reporting. The persuader rule, however, extends the obligation to report the use of consultants even if the consultant has no direct contact with employees and the employer is free to accept or reject its recommendations.

“The Department of Labor’s rule is designed to discourage employers from taking the reasonable step of hiring outside counsel to ensure that they are complying with labor laws,” said Kelly Kolb, vice president for government affairs. “Labor law is complex and many businesses rely on the support of outside counsel to ensure that their actions during an organizing campaign comply with the morass of rules and regulations. By undermining the advice exception, DOL is putting employers in a no-win situation where seeking the guidance they need will almost certainly be used against them by organizers.”

“RILA will work with lawmakers to reverse this rule and its harmful effects.” 

RILA is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.

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Brian Dodge
Executive Vice President, Communications and Strategic Initiatives
Phone: 703-600-2017
Email: brian.dodge@rila.org

RILA VP government affairs Kelly Kolb: Agreement on a long-term transportation package is good news

Arlington, VA, 2015-12-3 — /EPR Retail News/ — ​​​A long-term transportation funding plan is welcome news, but retailers remained frustrated that stronger provisions to measure performance at America’s ports were not included in the final agreement.

“Agreement on a long-term transportation package is good news,” said Kelly Kolb, vice president for government affairs with the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA). “Retailers depend on our nation’s roads, bridges, and ports to connect with suppliers and our customers.”

“The establishment of goals for a national freight strategic plan is also important as it will allow retailers to participate in forecasting future freight volumes along with identifying best practices for improving efficiency and productivity across the nation’s supply chain,” added Kolb.

Retailers were disappointed that the deal did not include stronger provisions to address congestion issues at our nation’s ports. Retailers had hoped the deal would include language from the Senate-passed version of the bill that would have given government and supply chain stakeholders consistent and objective means to measure performance at America’s ports. Instead, a watered-down version of the provision was adopted in the final deal, making it less likely that the congestion issues that have plagued America’s largest ports in recent years will change anytime soon.

“Congestion at our nation’s ports continues to be a huge concern for retailers, and unfortunately, the transportation deal did not go far enough in addressing what is a growing problem for businesses dependent on a global supply chain,” said Kolb. “Sound roads and bridges are important, but our nation’s ports are equally vital as the gateway for retail goods, raw materials, and billions of customers around the world.”

RILA is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.

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Jason Brewer
Senior Vice President, Communications & Advocacy
Phone: 703-600-2050
Email: jason.brewer@rila.org

SOURCE: Retail Industry Leaders Association

RILA: retailers urged lawmakers to authorize twin 33s to operate on America’s highway system

Arlington, VA, 2015-11-19 — /EPR Retail News/ — ​​​In a letter to the U.S. Senate, retailers urged lawmakers to keep language authorizing twin 33s to operate on America’s highway system. The change would allow for a five foot increase in twin trailers—from 28 to 33 feet—with no change to federal weight guidelines. Retailers support the measure which would make freight shipping safer and more efficient.

“Retailers support a nationwide framework that creates a uniform standard for freight shipping,” said Kelly Kolb, vice president for government affairs with the Retail Industry Leaders Association. “In addition to added fuel efficiency, extending trailers by five feet will reduce the number of trucks on the road, meaning a reduction in carbon emissions and less congestion on our nation’s interstate highways.”

While some have suggested that the twin 33s provision would create a safety risk, academic studies have actually found the opposite to be true. Because of their longer wheelbase, 33-foot double trailer configurations are inherently more stable than twin 28-foot double trailers. On the nation’s third-busiest toll road, the Florida Turnpike, twin 33s have traveled more than one million miles in the past five years without a single accident.

“Twin 33s offer retailers and freight haulers greater efficiency, lower fuel costs, and a less congested highway system,” added Kolb. “This is a common-sense change that benefits all those reliant on a safer and more efficient supply chain.”

Full letter linked here.

RILA is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.

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Jason Brewer
Senior Vice President, Communications and Advocacy
Phone: 703-600-2050
Email: jason.brewer@rila.org

SOURCE: Retail Industry Leaders Association