It’s official. On March 27, 2017, President Trump signed the Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution (H.J. Res. 37) invalidating the regulations that implemented President Obama’s Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Executive Order (EO 13673). Also known as the “contractor blacklisting” regulations, the rules were finalized towards the end of the Obama administration and would have required government contractors and subcontractors to report alleged, unproven violations of 14 federal labor and employment laws—“administrative merits determinations” such as NLRB complaints—for consideration by government contracting officers in awarding federal contracts, among other onerous requirements. At the same time as signing the CRA rescinding the implementing blacklisting regulations, President Trump revoked EO 13673.
Ogletree Governmental Affairs, Inc. (a subsidiary of Ogletree Deakins) worked closely with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in helping lead a coalition of business groups opposing the government contractor blacklisting regulations going back to the Clinton administration and continuing throughout the Obama administration following the issuance of the blacklisting EO and its implementing regulations from the Federal Acquisition Regulatory (FAR) Council and guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor.
By signing the CRA resolution, President Trump effectively put an end to the decades-long effort to use the federal procurement process to establish alternative labor law remedies that were not approved by Congress.