Federal Legislative and Regulatory Update for Higher Ed
How did Chief Government Affairs Officer Josh Ulman start off his Washington Update session at the CUPA-HR Annual Conference last month? With politics. There’s no getting around it. Elections, including several competitive congressional races, are right around the corner; and the outcomes of those races are bound to have an impact on both legislation and regulation in the months ahead. Ulman also covered issues concerning the Affordable Care Act (ACA), labor-management relations and several executive orders.
Hot Public Policy Issues for Higher Ed Employers
You’ll want to watch the video of Josh’s presentation to get the specifics, but here are a few of the highlights:
- The January 1, 2015 ACA deadline is fast approaching. Employers with 100 or more employees must provide minimum essential health coverage for full-time employees (working 30 hours or more per week). Employers will be deemed in compliance for 2015 if they cover 70% of their full-time employees. For 2016, employers must cover 95% of their employees to be deemed in compliance. Treatment of adjunct faculty and student employees was also covered in the presentation.
- Pending ACA-related legislation could change the definition of full-time worker (Save American Workers Act, H.R. 2575) and could exempt student works from the employer mandate if they’re enrolled half-time or more (H.R. 5262 and H.R. 5298). Stay tuned!
- The NLRB has reissued a proposed union election rule that would alter the election timeframe and restrict communication between employers and employees prior to a union election. Other labor relations rules and pending cases are outlined in the presentation.
- In addition to other actions, OSHA has reopened its proposed rule on occupational injury and illness recording and recordkeeping for large employers to solicit further comments.
- Executive orders and actions issued by President Obama in 2014 are also covered in Ulman’s session.
4 Ways to Keep Your Institution Informed on the Issues
Here are four ways you can assume a strategic role when it comes to employment-related legislation and regulation:
- Cultivate a relationship with the individual or team on your campus that handles federal government relations. See HR & Government Relations: Partnering on Public Policy for more tips and ideas.
- Share HR’s perspective on the issues with those who handle federal government relations for your campus.
- Share Ulman’s conference session video with administrators and staff who would benefit from the information.
- Stay in the know by reading CUPA-HR’s Washington Update in the monthly eNews, Washington Insider Alert e-mails, and position statements that inform federal legislators and regulators about the impact of proposed legislation and regulation on higher education employers.