House panel takes up NLRB complaint vs. Boeing
Fri, 17 Jun 2011 11:52:05 GMT —
NORTH CHARLESTON (WACH, AP) -- A congressional committee held a hearing on the National Labor Relations Board complaint against Boeing.
The U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government convened Friday in North Charleston with four GOP committee members, including three from South Carolina.
The NLRB alleges Boeing built an assembly line for its new 787 aircraft in South Carolina to avoid unionized workers in Washington state. Boeing has challenged the complaint, saying no union workers lost jobs.
About two dozen protesters gathered at the hearing. Charleston docks worker Georgette Carr said the state needs good jobs but that companies shouldn't be allowed to break federal labor laws in creating them.
Gov. Nikki Haley and other Republican governors are calling on the National Labor Relations Board to dismiss its complaint. Haley and 15 other GOP governors wrote to NLRB general counsel Lafe Solomon on Thursday saying the probe hamstrings governors who are trying to create jobs. The letter was released Friday. Click here to read the full letter.
Haley told the committee that the complaint has the potential to affect workers across America.Related Stories 2 Democrats want NLRB attorney's testimony delayed Boeing employee files unfair labor practice Hearing opens in labor complaint against Boeing Judge considers union suit against SC governor NLRB hearing in Seattle on Boeing jobs complaint
Attorney General Alan Wilson also defended Boeing's decision.
"This complaint is without legal merit or precedent and threatens the company TMs $6.1 Billion annual impact on South Carolina TMs economy," Wilson said Friday.
The panel wrapped up the hearing after more than three hours of testimony.
A judge in Seattle is hearing the NLRB complaint, but the committee is investigating what was behind it.
Thursday, two ranking Democrats said a labor board attorney shouldn't have to testify about the ongoing lawsuit over South Carolina's Boeing plant.
U.S. Reps. Elijah Cummings and George Miller said Thursday in a letter to Rep. Darrell Issa that it was unethical to call on Solomon to answer questions about the agency's case against Boeing.
South Carolina is a right-to-work state, meaning workers don't have to join a union to work at a job site.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)