NH PELRB Logo
Website Name - an official New Hampshire Government website
Smaller text size Reset text size Larger text size

Rules > PART Pub 301


PART Pub 301 BARGAINING UNIT CERTIFICATION

Pub 301.01 Election of Exclusive Representative.
Pub 301.02 Intervenors.
Pub 301.03 Decertification of Exclusive Representative.
Pub 301.04 Merger or Affiliation of Existing Exclusive Representative.
Pub 301.05 Written Majority Authorization.

Pub 301.01 Election of Exclusive Representative.

(a) A petition for certification as the exclusive representative of a bargaining unit having no certified representative may be filed at any time. A petition for certification as the exclusive representative of a bargaining unit for which a collective bargaining agreement constituting a bar to election under RSA 273-A:11, I (b) presently exists shall be filed no more than 240 days and no less than 180 days prior to the budget submission date of the affected public employer in the year that agreement expires, notwithstanding any provisions in the agreement for extension or renewal.

(b) Any petition filed less than 180 days prior to the budget submission date of the affected public employer shall be accompanied by an explanation of why the petition could not have been filed sooner. The board shall refuse to entertain any petition filed so close to the budget submission date of the affected employer that the board cannot reasonably conduct the election called for in the petition within 120 days of the budget submission date.

(c) The petition under (a) above shall set out:

(1) The name, address and telephone number of the employee organization, employee group or person responsible for petitioning for certification as the exclusive representative of the bargaining unit, and of its representative, and the affiliation, if any, of the employee organization;

(2) The name, address and telephone number of the affected public employer and of its representative;

(3) A description of the proposed bargaining unit, together with the total number of employees in the proposed bargaining unit, their classifications and the number of employees in each classification, any category of employee proposed to be excluded from the bargaining unit and the reason for excluding that category:

(4) The name, address, telephone number and affiliation of any exclusive representative presently representing the bargaining unit;

(5) The expiration date of any existing collective bargaining agreement; and

(6) The budget submission date of the public employer.

(d) This information may be provided on a petition for certification form, copies of which may be obtained from the board pursuant to Pub 103.02.

(e) A petition filed under this section shall, when appropriate, contain a statement that the certification of the proposed bargaining unit has been agreed upon by the affected employer so indicating that no objection to the certification is to be filed.

(f) A petition filed under this section shall also contain a statement that at least 30% of the employees in the proposed bargaining unit wish to be represented by the employee organization named in the petition.

(g) Petitions seeking certification of an employee organization as the exclusive representative of a proposed bargaining unit composed of professional and non-professional employees shall be supported by the requisite percentage of employees in each category.

(h) Individual petition cards, corresponding to the statement of support in (f), evidencing that the requisite number of employees in the proposed bargaining unit desire an election to be held, shall accompany the petition but shall be kept separate from the petition in order to ensure their confidentiality.

(i) Petition cards shall, as a minimum, disclose the purposes for which they were solicited, the name of the labor organization or employee group soliciting same, and bear the signature and typewritten or printed name of the employee and the date the signature was obtained.

(j) If an employee has signed more than one petition card and has signed a statement repudiating a previously signed petition card, the board shall recognize the last dated card or statement.

(k) The board shall review the sufficiency of petition cards as soon as practicable once the board concludes, in its discretion, that it has received sufficient information to complete this determination. The board shall accept and review any subsequently filed petition cards or revocations of petition cards up to the time of its determination. Upon the completion of its determination the board shall notify the parties by order of its conclusions as to the sufficiency of petition cards and shall not thereafter accept nor review additional petition cards, regardless of whether such petition cards are filed by additional employees or represent revocations of previously filed and reviewed petition cards.

(l) In determining whether the requisite number of employees in the proposed bargaining unit desire an election to be held, the board shall not consider:

(1) Any undated signature,

(2) Any signature obtained more than 6 months prior to the date the petition was filed, or

(3) The signature of any employee who is no longer employed in the proposed bargaining unit when the petition is filed.

(m) Any person filing a petition for certification shall at the same time deliver a copy of the petition to any employee organization identified in the petition and to the public employer identified in the petition.

(n) The public employer shall display copies of the petition at locations where employees of the existing or proposed bargaining unit work on the next working day following receipt of the petition. When it is necessary for a public employer to display copies of the petition at diverse locations because potential bargaining unit members work at sites remote from the place where the administration of the public employer is located, copies of the petition shall be mailed to those remote locations no later than the next working day following receipt of the petition. The copies so mailed shall be displayed at those remote locations on the same day they are received.

(o) The public employer identified in the petition shall forward to the board as expeditiously as possible a complete list of the names of the employees in the bargaining unit proposed in the petition in order to permit the board to compare this list with the names submitted in support of the petition.

(p) A petition filed under this section shall bear a conspicuous notice that exceptions and petitions to intervene shall be filed within 15 days of the date the original petition is filed. Exceptions shall set out a clear and concise explanation of any factual or legal reasons why the board should not entertain the petition.

(q) A pre-hearing conference as described in Pub 202.01 may be scheduled when, for example:

(1) Issues revealed in pleadings might be disposed of or thereby clarified; or

(2) Evidentiary or procedural matters might be expedited.

(r) If the board determines that the requisite showing of interest has been made, it shall proceed to determine the appropriate bargaining unit under Pub 302 and then to conduct an election under Pub 301.

Source. #2325, eff 3-28-83; ss by #3019, eff 5-14-85; EXPIRED: 5-14-91

New. #5679, eff 8-4-93, EXPIRED: 8-4-99
New. #7093, INTERIM, eff 9-9-99, EXPIRES: 1-7-00; ss by #7187, eff 1-8-00, EXPIRED: 1-8-08
New. #9081-B, eff 1-29-08

Pub 301.02 Intervenors. Any employee organization other than the petitioner and any incumbent exclusive representative wishing to appear on the ballot shall file a petition to intervene setting out the same information as required in a petition filed under Pub 301.01 except that a petition to intervene shall be supported by at least 20% of the employees in the bargaining unit proposed in the petition to intervene. Petitions shall be filed under this section within 15 days of the date the original petition for certification or petition challenging certification is filed. Each intervenor shall deliver a copy of its petition to intervene to the parties named in the original petition when it files its petition with the board.

Source. #2325, eff 3-28-83; ss by #3019, eff 5-14-85; EXPIRED: 5-14-91

New. #5679, eff 8-4-93, EXPIRED: 8-4-99
New. #7093, INTERIM, eff 9-9-99, EXPIRES: 1-7-00; ss by #7187, eff 1-8-00, EXPIRED: 1-8-08
New. #9114, INTERIM, eff 3-27-08, EXPIRED: 9-23-08
New. #9441-B, eff 3-27-09

Pub 301.03 Decertification of Exclusive Representative.

(a) A petition for decertification alleging that the members of a bargaining unit no longer wish to be represented by the employee organization presently representing them shall contain the same categories of information and shall be treated in the same fashion as a petition filed under Pub 301.01. This information may be provided on a petition for decertification form, copies of which may be obtained from the board pursuant to Pub 103.02.

(b) When such a petition is successfully brought and affirmatively voted upon so that a majority of the votes have been cast for the proposition of "No Representative," the certified bargaining agent shall be decertified and there shall no longer be any organization with the statutory authority to give notice of an intent to bargain under RSA 273-A or 273-C or to enforce the terms of any collective bargaining agreement between a public employer and a formerly certified bargaining agent.

(c) If a group of employees in a bargaining unit seeks to decertify an existing certified bargaining agent and to replace it with a new certified bargaining agent, the group shall file a petition for certification under the applicable provisions of Pub 301.01.

(d) The group, as petitioners, shall disclose on the petition for certification form that there is an existing certified bargaining agent, its identity, representative, place of business and telephone number.

(e) Petitioners shall provide notice to the currently certified bargaining representative who shall become a party to that proceeding, entitled to the same service and notice requirements as apply to the public employer.

(f) If petitioners are successful under these circumstances in decertifying an incumbent exclusive bargaining representative and in replacing it with a new certified bargaining agent in accordance with the majority vote requirements of these rules, then:

(1) Any existing collective bargaining agreement between the former certified bargaining agent and the public employer shall thereafter be administered by the newly certified collective bargaining agent as of the date the board has certified it as such, through its date of termination;

(2) If, at the time the newly elected exclusive bargaining agent is certified as such, there is no collective bargaining agreement in effect or the formerly certified exclusive bargaining agent and the public employer were in the course of bargaining for such an agreement, the newly certified collective bargaining agent shall assume the responsibility for continuing with that bargaining or for giving notice of intent to bargain within the time limits prescribed by statute; or

(3) If a newly certified collective bargaining agent enters on-going negotiations after the time for introducing new proposals has passed, it shall be permitted to initiate a single, one-time exchange of proposals or modifications to existing proposals.

(g) Pursuant to RSA 273-A:10, VI(b), the board shall decertify any employee organization which is found in a judicial proceeding comporting with RSA 273-A:15 to have discriminated with regard to membership, or with regard to the conditions thereof, because of age, sex, race, color, creed, marital status, or national origin; or has systematically failed to allow its membership equal participation in the affairs of the employee organization. If it is found in such judicial proceeding that grounds for decertification exist, the board shall conduct a hearing to determine if the certification of the employee organization which is the exclusive representative should be revoked under RSA 273-A:10, VI(b).

(h) After decertification of an exclusive representative under the provisions of this subsection, the rules of contract bar, RSA 273-A:11, I(b), shall not apply and a petition for certification may be filed under Pub 301.01 at any time. No employee organization decertified under the provisions of Pub 301.03(g) may seek to represent any bargaining unit in any election subsequent to its decertification until it has satisfied the board that it has purged itself of the violations for which it was decertified.

(i) Upon decertification of an exclusive representative, the board shall deliver a notice of decertification to the decertified employee organization and to the public employer in which affected bargaining unit is located. The public employer shall immediately display copies of the notice at locations where employees of the affected bargaining unit work.

(j) Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of Pub 301.03, a certified bargaining agent may surrender its certification at any time by notice of its intent to surrender to members of the bargaining unit and written notice filed with the board and there upon:

(1) The board shall issue documentation of surrender;

(2) The documentation shall state the effective date whereupon the surrendering bargaining agent shall have no further responsibilities under the collective bargaining agreement, or under those provisions of RSA 273-A or 273-C giving it authority to bargain collectively;

(3) The terms of any collective bargaining agreement shall be void as of the effective date of the surrendering; and

(4) The surrendering of a certification as bargaining agent shall not be grounds to bar a subsequent bargaining agent election within the following 12 months under RSA 273-A:10, III or 273-C:10, III.

Source. #2325, eff 3-28-83; ss by #3019, eff 5-14-85; EXPIRED: 5-14-91

New. #5679, eff 8-4-93, EXPIRED: 8-4-99
New. #7093, INTERIM, eff 9-9-99, EXPIRES: 1-7-00; ss by #7187, eff 1-8-00, EXPIRED: 1-8-08
New. #9114, INTERIM, eff 3-27-08, EXPIRED: 9-23-08
New. #9441-B, eff 3-27-09

Pub 301.04 Merger or Affiliation of Existing Exclusive Representative.

(a) In the event of the merger or affiliation of the existing exclusive representative with any other national, regional, state or local organization or the removal of any such exclusive representative from affiliation with any such organization, the board shall duly note the status and identity without the requirement of a new election if all of the following conditions are met:

(1) The internal rules of the exclusive representative as to the approval of the affiliation or disaffiliation have been followed:

(2) The employees in the bargaining unit have been provided 2 weeks written notice by regular mail or other such opportunity intended to inform of the proposed change in status or organizational form through affiliation or disaffiliation and have had the opportunity for input into that decision whether by direct vote, or vote of their representative; and

(3) The local organization did not change materially from that selected as the exclusive representative.

(b) If the board finds that there has been a material change in the local organization or that any of the conditions set forth in (a) have not been met, the board shall require an election to determine the wishes of the members of the bargaining unit before the change shall be recognized, regardless of the status of any contract which may be in effect. The validity of any such contract shall not be affected by any such inquiry or vote.

(c) In the event an employee organization is dissolved, voluntarily surrenders its certification, loses a certification election, or is decertified, its representation as exclusive representative shall be withdrawn by the board as contemplated by RSA 273-A:10, VI(a).

Source. #2325, eff 3-28-83; ss by #3019, eff 5-14-85; EXPIRED: 5-14-91

New. #5679, eff 8-4-93, EXPIRED: 8-4-99
New. #7093, INTERIM, eff 9-9-99, EXPIRES: 1-7-00; ss by #7187, eff 1-8-00, EXPIRED: 1-8-08
New. #9114, INTERIM, eff 3-27-08, EXPIRED: 9-23-08
New. #9441-B, eff 3-27-09

Pub 301.05 Written Majority Authorization (Note: 273-A:1, XII & 273-A:10, VIII repealed eff. August 8, 2011).

(a) Petitions for certification may establish by confidential authorization cards pursuant to RSA 273-A:10, IX that a majority of employees in a proposed appropriate bargaining unit wish to be represented by a designated employee organization for the purposes of collective bargaining. Such petitions shall be referred to as "written majority authorization petitions" or "WMA petitions." The election process described in Pub 303 shall not apply to WMA petitions except as provided under Pub 301.05 (l).

(b) A WMA petition shall not be filed in the case of an existing bargaining unit with a duly certified and lawfully recognized incumbent exclusive representative.

(c) The board shall determine the appropriate bargaining unit in the case of WMA petitions pursuant to RSA 273-A:8 and Pub 302.01.

(d) Authorization cards shall be dated within the 6 months preceding the date on which the cards are offered to establish majority and exclusive representative status. Authorization cards dated prior to this time period shall be rejected and shall not be used to establish written majority authorization. Authorization cards shall be deemed and treated as confidential when filed with the board or with a neutral third party pursuant to Pub 301.05 (j)(1) or (j)(4).

(e) Authorization cards shall, at a minimum:

(1) Disclose the purposes for which they were solicited;

(2) List the name of the labor organization or employee group soliciting the authorization card;

(3) Bear the signature and typewritten or printed name of the employee;

(4) State the date the signature was executed;

(5) Contain the statement: "This card may be used to establish that a majority of employees in an appropriate bargaining unit request that the named labor organization or employee group be certified to act as their exclusive agent and representative for the purposes of collective bargaining pursuant to RSA 273-A:10, IX or to request an election pursuant to Pub 301.01 and RSA 273-A:10, I among employees to determine whether a majority of eligible employees wish to have the named labor organization or employee group as the bargaining unit's exclusive agent and representative;" and

(6) Display a copy of the State seal and the designation "Public Employee Labor Relations Board."

(f) The board shall publish an authorization card form which shall be used for the purposes of Pub 301.05. Employee organizations, employee groups and others utilizing authorization cards may reproduce the board's authorization card form on cards no smaller than 3" by 5" and include a copy of their logo or emblem on the card providing that the logo or emblem is smaller in size than the seal of the State of New Hampshire.

(g) If an employee has signed more than one authorization card and has signed a statement repudiating a previously signed authorization card, the board shall recognize the last dated card or statement.

(h) WMA petitions shall be executed and contain the statement that the petitioner seeks to be certified without an election and that the WMA petition is supported by authorization cards executed by a majority of the employees in the proposed bargaining unit.

(i) WMA petitions shall otherwise comply with Pub 301.01.

(j) The process for determining whether a majority of employees in an appropriate bargaining unit have authorized an employee organization to act as their exclusive representative shall be as follows:

(1) The WMA petition may be filed with the board and shall state the public employer's agreement or disagreement with the proposed bargaining unit. The petitioner shall at the same time provide a copy of the WMA petition to the public employer electronically unless electronic transmission is not available and by regular mail or by hand delivery. The WMA petition shall include a statement that the petitioner seeks to have the board examine the authorization cards. Absent exceptional cause, the board shall complete its examination of the authorization cards within 10 days of the filing of the petition unless further time is required to conduct hearings concerning matters such as, but not limited to, the appropriateness of the proposed bargaining unit;

(2) Within 3 business days of the date the petitioner files the WMA petition with the board, the public employer shall file with the board a WMA petition employee list which shall include the name, position, date of hire, and current employment status, including probationary status, of all employees in the proposed bargaining unit;

(3) The board shall prepare a signed written report on a form published by and available at the board certifying the result of its confidential inspection of the authorization cards, and including the following information:

a. The name of the individual who performed the confidential inspection of the authorization cards;

b. The name of the public employer and employee organization;

c. The location where and the date when the authorization card confidential inspection was conducted;

d. A description of the bargaining unit including the positions contained in the unit and the number of employees in each position; and

e. The statement that the authorization cards have been examined in accordance with the procedures and requirements set forth in Pub 301.05 and the result of the inspection; and

(4) Alternatively to (1), (2) and (3), the petitioner and the public employer may agree to have a neutral third party other than the board examine the authorization cards through the following procedures:

a. The petitioner shall provide a copy of the WMA petition to the public employer electronically, unless electronic transmission is not available, and by regular mail or by hand delivery. The WMA petition shall include a statement that the petitioner seeks to have the authorization cards examined by a neutral third party other than the board;

b. The parties shall have 10 days from the employer's receipt of the WMA petition to appoint an agreed upon neutral third party. In the absence of such agreement, the petition shall be filed with the board and processed in accordance with Pub 301.05 (j) (1), (2) and (3);

c. Within 3 business days of the date the WMA petition is filed with a neutral third party other than the board, the public employer shall file with the neutral third party a WMA petition employee list which shall include the name, position, date of hire, and current employment status, including probationary status, of all employees in the proposed bargaining unit. Absent exceptional cause, the neutral shall complete the examination of the authorization cards within 10 days of the neutral's appointment;

d. The WMA petition shall include the following instructions to a neutral third party selected pursuant to Pub 301.05 (j)(4)b:

1. The neutral third party shall examine the original authorization cards in a confidential manner to determine whether a majority of the employees in the proposed bargaining unit have signed authorization cards;

2. In all cases, the neutral third party shall prepare and sign a written report containing the information required under Pub 301.05 (j)(3) documenting the result of the neutral's examination of the authorization cards; and

3. The neutral third party shall provide the original written report and the original authorization cards to the petitioner, and a copy of the original written report to the public employer; and

e. Within 10 business days of the issuance of the neutral's written report the petitioner shall file with the board the neutral's written report, the WMA petition, and the authorization cards.

(k) The public employer and the petitioner shall file with the board any objections or exceptions to a WMA petition and/or the neutral third party's examination of the authorization cards within 15 days of the date the WMA petition is filed with the board under Pub 301.05 (j)(1) or Pub 301.05 (j)(4) e. The board shall conduct a further examination of the authorization cards and report to the parties the result of this review in its written decision addressing any objections or exceptions that have been filed.

(l) The RSA 273-A:10, III election bar shall not apply to WMA petitions. The petitioner may proceed to an election in the event of a board decision that the petitioner did not obtain written majority authorization from bargaining unit employees by filing a written request for election on a form provided by the board within 10 calendar days of the date of the board's decision. The request for election shall be based upon the appropriate bargaining unit as determined by the board and must be supported by a 30% showing of interest under Pub 301.01(f) and (h) and is otherwise subject to board rules and the provisions of RSA 273-A:1 et. seq. applicable to petitions for certification as the exclusive representative of a bargaining unit having no certified representative. Authorization cards initially examined to support a WMA petition may be used to establish the requisite 30% showing of interest required by Pub 301.01 (f) and (h) and shall meet the requirements of Pub 301.01 (l) on the date they are reinspected to support a request for an election. This provision does not authorize the conduct of an election which would otherwise by barred by the provisions of RSA 273-A:10, III.

(m) In contested cases, the board shall not issue a certification of an exclusive representative and an order to negotiate until after the time to file a motion for rehearing under Pub 205.02 has expired and any timely motion for rehearing has been decided.

Source. #9080, INTERIM, eff 1-29-08, EXPIRED: 7-27-08

New. #9243, eff 8-28-08

New Hampshire Public Employee Labor Relations Board
2½ Beacon Street, Suite 200 | Concord, NH 03301
Telephone: (603) 271-2587 | E-mail: pelrb@nh.gov
The materials presented on this website are provided for informational purposes only. No information, data or statements should be considered as personal or specific legal counsel to any visitor to this site. If you have a specific question requiring a legal opinion you should contact your own union representative or your own attorney.