HB1685 (2012) Detail

Relative to collective bargaining under the public employee labor relations statutes.






AN ACT relative to collective bargaining under the public employee labor relations statutes.

SPONSORS: Rep. Robbins, Hills 26

COMMITTEE: Labor, Industrial and Rehabilitative Services


This bill modifies certain rights of employers and employees under the public employee labor relations statute.

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.




In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twelve

AN ACT relative to collective bargaining under the public employee labor relations statutes.

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

1 New Paragraph; Public Employee Labor Relations; Definitions; Supervisor. Amend RSA 273-A:1 by inserting after paragraph X the following new paragraph:

X-a. “Supervisor” means an individual employed by a public employer having authority in the interest of the public employer to hire, direct, assign, promote, reward, transfer, furlough, layoff, recall, suspend, discipline, or remove employees, to adjust their grievances, or to effectively recommend such action, if the exercise of the authority is not merely routine or clerical in nature but requires the consistent exercise of independent judgment, except that, with respect to any unit which includes firefighters or nurses, the term “supervisor” includes only those individuals who devote a preponderance of their employment time to exercising such authority.

2 Bargaining by State Employees. RSA 273-A:9, I is repealed and reenacted to read as follows:

I. All compensation, cost items, and terms and conditions of employment affecting state employees in the classified system generally shall be negotiated by the state, represented by the governor as chief executive, with a single employee bargaining committee comprised of exclusive representatives of all interested bargaining units according to the following management and employee rights:

(a) Nothing in this chapter shall affect the authority of any management official of any agency to determine the mission, budget, organization, number of employees, and internal security practices of the agency and, in accordance with applicable laws:

(1) To hire, assign, direct, layoff, and retain employees in the agency, or to suspend, remove, reduce in grade or pay, or take other disciplinary action against such employees;

(2) To assign work, to make determinations with respect to sub-contracting, and to determine the personnel by which agency operations shall be conducted;

(3) With respect to filling positions, to make selections for appointments from:

(A) Among properly ranked and certified candidates for promotion; or

(B) Any other appropriate source; and

(4) To take whatever actions may be necessary to carry out the agency mission during emergencies.

(b) Nothing in this section shall preclude any agency and any labor organization from negotiating:

(1) At the election of the agency, on the numbers, types, and grades of employees or positions assigned to any organizational subdivision, work project, or tour of duty, or the technology, methods, and means of performing work;

(2) Procedures which management officials of the agency will observe in exercising any authority under this section; or

(3) Appropriate arrangements for employees adversely affected by the exercise of any authority under this section by such management officials.

(c) Each employee shall have the right to form, join, or assist any labor organization, or to refrain from any such activity, freely and without fear of penalty or reprisal, and each employee shall be protected in the exercise of such right. Except as otherwise provided under this chapter or other provision of law, such right includes the right:

(1) To act for a labor organization in the capacity of a representative and the right, in that capacity, to present the views of the labor organization to heads of agencies and other officials of the executive branch of the government, the legislature, or other appropriate authorities;

(2) To engage in collective bargaining with respect to conditions of employment through representatives chosen by employees under this chapter; and

(3) To refrain from paying any fees to, or at the direction of, any labor organization as a condition of employment.

3 New Section; Bargaining Unit Status for Public Employee Supervisors. Amend RSA 273-A by inserting after section 2-a the following new section:

273-A:2-b Bargaining Unit Status of Public Employee Supervisors. Supervisors are not included in any bargaining unit and not covered employees for purposes of collective bargaining.

4 Effective Date. This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.



Revised 01/12/12


AN ACT relative to collective bargaining under the public employee labor relations statutes.


      The Department of Administrative Services, Public Employee Labor Relations Board, Judicial Branch, New Hampshire Association of Counties, and New Hampshire Municipal Association state this bill will have an indeterminable impact on state, county and local expenditures in FY 2012 and each year thereafter. There will be no impact on state, county and local revenues.


    The Department of Administrative Services states there are indeterminate costs associated with the language in this bill due in part to the change from bargaining wages to compensation and decentralization of bargaining to the agencies.

    The Public Employee Labor Relations Board states the changes in this bill will have an indeterminable fiscal impact on state, county and local governments. Specifically, the Board states its own budget will be impacted to the extent this bill will likely result in additional legal disputes brought before the Board.

    The Judicial Branch states as an employer this bill would have no fiscal impact on the Branch. The Branch states however it may see a fiscal impact from this bill in appeals that may arise under it and reach the Supreme Court. The Branch states any issues arising from the proposed bill would be adjudicated in the Public Employee Labor Relations Board (PELRB) and in accordance with RSA 273-A:14, appeals from the PELRB may be brought to the Supreme Court in accordance with RSA chapter 541. The Branch states it has no information as to how many such appeals may arise from this bill but estimates even one appeal accepted for full appellate consideration could result in a fiscal impact in excess of $10,000.

    The New Hampshire Association of Counties states this bill establishes the definition for supervisor and then removes supervisors from the collective bargaining process. The Association states that appointed county employees are not considered part of any bargaining unit and the number of employees who might be considered a supervisor is not easily ascertainable. The Association states due to insufficient information it is unable to determine the impact of this bill on county expenditures.

    The New Hampshire Municipal Association states this bill defines certain public employees as “supervisors” and excludes them from participation in collective bargaining. The Association states this may result in a nominal impact on local expenditures for collective bargaining, but is unable to make any estimation.