HR Management & Compliance

Louisiana: RIP EFCA, Paycheck Fairness Act

by Mark Adams, Jones Walker

At first glance, nothing significant came out of Louisiana. No Tea Party candidates to create excitement. Republicans and Democrats each lost a U.S. House seat and won a seat they hadn’t controlled, so no contribution to the change of control in the House.

However, the Republican takeover of the House and the Democrats’ loss of their supermajority in the Senate will have a significant impact on the Democrats’ legislative agenda. As President Obama said Tuesday morning, “My whole agenda is at risk.”

I predicted from the beginning that the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA) would not survive a Republican filibuster even with a Democratic supermajority. After today, EFCA, the Paycheck Fairness Act, and any compromise measures are dead and buried, probably along with the rest of the administration’s labor and employment agenda.

But that doesn’t mean employers can afford to breathe easy. Despite the election results, employers can expect increased regulatory oversight, more audits, and more aggressive audits — at least for the next two years — as the administration shifts its focus to accomplishing as much through regulation of what it can no longer accomplish legislatively.

Mark Adams is editor of Louisiana Employment Law Letter and an attorney with Jones Walker, a Louisiana law firm with offices in New Orleans and Baton Rouge. He can be reached at (504) 582-8000.