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Two Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane Partners Headline at International Foundation’s Annual Washington Legislative Update in D.C.

Katherine A. Hesse, Partner with Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP, and Chair of the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans’ Government Liaison Committee recently chaired and introduced the keynote speaker, well-known political commentator Norman J. Orenstein, Ph.D.  Mr. Orenstein, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and contributing editor and columnist for the National Journal and The Atlantic, opened the Foundation’s annual two day Washington Legislative Update at the Washington Hilton in Washington DC with an overview of the 2019 Political Landscape.

Kier Wachterhauser, also a Partner with Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP, gave the labor and employment law update.  His topics included a U.S. Supreme Court and federal agency update, news from the National Labor Relations Board, sexual harassment, drug testing and leave law trends across the country.

Ms. Hesse also introduced and moderated the session on Single Employer Challenges and Opportunities, which was presented by Diann Howland, Vice President of Legislative Affairs for the DC based American Benefits Council.  Other topics covered in this conference included: a panel of the “Top Ten Benefits Issues Today”, a fiduciary update, movement toward state activity, Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Work, challenges and opportunities for multiemployer and public sector plans, health care plan issues and developments, retirement plan issues and developments as well as long term economic issues and policy implications, and communicating with stakeholders.

As Chair of the Foundation’s Government Liaison committee, Katherine and her Committee oversee the activities that will best educate Foundation members and Congressional representatives and staff with respect to employee benefits legislation and regulation. The Washington Legislative Update is its signature event each year. The Foundation is a nonprofit organization providing the employee benefits community, including its 31,000 members with solution-oriented education, research and information throughout the United States and Canada. In addition to Ms. Hesse, the Committee includes Phyllis Borzi, former Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), Jim Klein, President of the American Benefits Council, Lori Lucas, President and CEO of the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), Michael Scott, the Executive Director of the National Coordinating Committee for Multiemployer Plans, (NCCMP) and others.

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Kevin Bresnahan, a partner with Murphy, Hesse, Toomey & Lehane, LLP, represented the Dedham School Committee in its recently-concluded collective bargaining with its teachers’ union. After nearly two years of negotiations, the union scheduled a strike vote last week. Attorney Bresnahan filed a petition with the Department of Labor Relations on behalf of the School Committee, and obtained an order to prevent the illegal strike. When the union went forward with the strike vote, a judge in the Norfolk Superior Read More

Legal Updates

Massachusetts Legislature Passes Post-Janus Bill Over Governor’s Veto

On September 19th, the Massachusetts Legislature overwhelmingly overrode Governor Charlie Baker’s veto of a union-friendly law. The bill was passed in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2018 decision in Janus v. AFSCME which relieved bargaining unit employees who were not members of the union of the obligation to pay dues to public sector unions. The Massachusetts bill allows unions to charge non-members certain fees, relieves unions of some of their obligations to those non-union employees, and expands unions’ access to public employees.

 

 

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