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Ranking Member Cassidy, Marshall, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Ease Burdens on Local Businesses

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-KS), and 6 Republican colleagues introduced the Save Local Business Act, which would provide clarity on joint employer and improve businesses’ ability to operate without violating federal joint employer rules. In September of 2022, the Department of Labor (DOL) proposed new joint employer rules, marking the third time since 2015 that joint employer standards have gone through the federal rulemaking process. The bill would codify a federal standard for joint employer and give stability to small businesses.

“Small businesses are crucial for supporting our communities,” said Dr. Cassidy. “This bill provides clarity to local businesses so they can continue to thrive without fear of breaking the law.”

“You can’t focus on running a business if the federal government keeps changing the rules. The Save Local Business Act provides long-overdue clarity and consistency that will protect our nation’s small businesses,” said Senator Marshall. “The Biden Administration’s Labor Department has relied on complicated court rulings to handle joint employers instead of providing clear guidance to the business community. In a time of economic hardship, we should be doing all that we can to help our nation's small businesses, not let the heavy hand of government regulations run amuck.” 

“NTU is proud to lead a coalition of eighteen organizations in applauding Senator Roger Marshall and Chairman James Comer for introducing the Save Local Business Act of 2023. This important legislation will protect taxpayers and local small businesses from tumultuous uncertainty caused by National Labor Relations Board overreach. The commonsense bill ends the seesaw effect of changing NLRB majorities by codifying the traditional definition of joint employment. From inflation to staffing shortages to supply chain issues, the last thing that Main Street businesses and taxpayers need are stacks of legal bills from trying to figure out if they’re a joint employer and the Save Local Business Act will stop this legal uncertainty immediately,” said Nick Johns, Policy & Government Affairs Manager, National Taxpayers Union.

“More than any other policy, franchise businesses need the certainty of the Save Local Business Act. IFA applauds Congressman Comer and Senator Marshall for reintroducing the Save Local Business Act, a common-sense bill that, if enacted, will indeed save hundreds of thousands of franchise small businesses from regulatory overreach. As the misguided National Labor Relations Board prepares to finalize an unnecessary and harmful joint employer standard later this year, it is critical that Congress pass the Save Local Business Act to provide franchise brands and owners with a reasonable, clear and consistent standard of joint employer so they can continue growing and thriving,” said Michael Layman, Senior Vice President, Government Relations and Public Affairs, International Franchise Association.

Cassidy and Marshall are joined by U.S. Senators Mike Braun (R-IN), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Cynthia Lummis (R-WY), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Roger Wicker (R-MS) in cosponsoring the bill.

U.S. Representative James Comer (R-KY-01) introduced the companion legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“Congress must promote policies that empower small businesses and free them from stifling regulations pushed by an unchecked and unelected federal bureaucracy,” said Representative Comer. “Our bill, the Save Local Business Act, will add common sense to the definition of a joint employer, protect the franchise business model, and reduce bureaucratic headaches for American job creators. Now is the time for job growth and creation, not harmful and unclear regulations.”

The Save Local Business Act:

  • Amends the National Labor Relations Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act to clarify that two or more employers must have “actual, direct, and immediate” control over employees to be considered joint employers.
  • Rolls back a convoluted joint employer scheme that threatens job creation and undermines the American Dream.
  • Restores a commonsense definition of employer to provide certainty and stability for workers and employers.
  • Protects workers and local employers from future overreach by unelected bureaucrats and activist judges.

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