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In her first memorandum as General Counsel, Jennifer Abruzzo laid out a clear agenda for the new enforcement priorities of the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”). All unionized and nonunionized private sector employers face the changes that are contemplated in Memorandum GC 21-04, released August 12, 2021. The Memorandum provides a detailed roadmap of the legal precedents and case-handling processes that Ms. Abruzzo advocates changing during her four-year term. To learn more about the Memorandum, click here
by Fred Breedlove The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (“Reclamation”) published its August 2021 24-Month Study on Monday, effectively declaring a shortage on the Colorado River for the Lower Colorado River Basin.  The August study predicts that the elevation of Lake Mead at Hoover Dam will continue to be below 1,075 feet (the level that triggers a Tier 1 shortage) for the foreseeable future and consistently below 1,050 feet (the level that triggers a Tier 2…
On July 1, 2021, the Office of Personnel Management, Department of the Treasury, Department of Health and Human Services, and Department of Labor issued the interim final rule “Requirements Related to Surprise Billing; Part I” (the “IFR”), which is the first phase of regulations implementing the No Surprises Act. The No Surprises Act provides certain protections against surprise medical bills and was signed into law on December 27, 2020 as part of the…
The minimum wage for federal contractors may increase to $15.00 on January 30, 2022, up from the current minimum wage of $10.95. President Biden issued Executive Order 14026, which seeks to increase the minimum hourly wage by $4.05 for all federal contractor employees. If implemented: On January 30, 2022, all federal agencies must incorporate the new minimum wage into new federal contract solicitations; By March 30, 2022, all agencies must actually implement the new…
In June the Internal Revenue Service released an updated Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Audit Technique Guide. This updated Guide replaces the initial Guide published in 2015. While it is too early to say whether the release of the updated guidance signals increased audit activity by the Service in the nonqualified plan space, plan sponsors of nonqualified deferred compensation plans may want to consider reading the updated guidance to re-familiarize themselves with the underpinnings of Section…
by Amanda A. Reeve Arizona’s Senior U.S. Senator Kyrsten Sinema is credited as being instrumental in negotiating the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package, H.R. 3684, entitled “Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America Act (“INVEST in America Act”), as amended, that passed with bipartisan support (69-30) in the U.S. Senate on Tuesday, August 10, 2021. It now returns to the House for final passage (should there be…
By:  Kevin J. Parker In a recent Arizona Court of Appeals case, Zambrano v. M & RC II LLC, 2021 WL 3204491 (7/29/2021), the Court of Appeals addressed the question whether a home builder’s attempt to disclaim implied warranties of workmanship and habitability was effective.  In that case, the buyer initialed the builder’s prominent disclaimer of all implied warranties, including implied warranties of habitability and workmanship.  After the purchase, the buyer sued the builder, claiming…
After hosting its 2020 Environmental & Sustainability Summit (“ESS”) virtually due to the COVID Pandemic…after all, what else could keep Phoenicians from fleeing the scorching heat and heading up to the cooler temps of Flagstaff…, the Arizona Manufacturers Council (“AMC”) and the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry (“Arizona Chamber”) were eager to get back to normalcy with their 2021 ESS. However, due to the ongoing uncertainties accompanying COVID, the AMC and Arizona Chamber decided…
by Luke Narducci, Mike Ford, and Amanda Reeve On January 9, 2020, the Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest (“ACLIPI”), on behalf of several individuals, filed with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (“Court”) a Petition for Review (“Petition”) of the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA”) determination of attainment for the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard (“Ozone Standard”) in the Phoenix-Mesa Area (“Area”) by the 2016 attainment deadline.…
At the conclusion of the EEOC’s administrative process, if a discrimination Charge has not otherwise been resolved, the Agency issues an administrative decision finding either merit to the Charge or not.  If the Agency concludes that the Charge has merit, then by statute it must engage in formal Conciliation with the Respondent/Employer in an effort to settle the matter without litigation. If Conciliation efforts fail, then the EEOC makes an administrative decision whether to file…