Issues Facing Private Clubs

NCA keeps you up to date on what you need to know

For 50 years, NCA has been the only Washington, D.C.-based trade association whose focus is lobbying Congress specifically for the benefit of private clubs and our industry. NCA monitors the legislative progress for any bill that might affect private clubs and our industry. When bills are first introduced, we send alerts to our members with insight and analysis on the impact a bill will have on their clubs. Through grassroots mobilization, we then attempt to stop damaging legislation before it is enacted or demonstrate our support for legislation that would help our industry.

We also advocate on behalf of our members in court cases and legal issues across the country. Drawing on the expertise of our in-house counsel and attorneys serving on NCA’s board of directors, NCA stands ready to tackle the most difficult legal issues facing private clubs.

Some of the top issues for clubs are listed below. 

Tax Reform

On September 30, 2017, President Trump and the Republican leadership in the House and Senate released the framework for tax reform legislation. For the private club industry, there is good news and some bad news. Read more.

"Waters of the United States"

NCA joined our allies on the Water Advocacy Coalition to submit comments to the Environmental Protection Agency in response to a request for information relating to the drafting of the new Waters of the U.S. Rule. We also joined our golf industry allies in submitting a separate set of comments that focused on our industry’s concerns with the old rule and what we need to have in a new rule. Read more.

The National Labor Relations Board’s Efforts to Help Labor Unions

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a ruling in 2015 that dramatically expanded the definition of “joint employer.” The NLRB ruling determined that employers—including clubs—that hire independent contractors (ICs), may be considered a “joint employer” with the ICs’ contracting firm. Thus clubs could be liable for any labor violations committed by the IC. Clubs that hire ICs such as landscapers, cleaning service providers and others should take heed as this ruling dramatically broadens their potential liability.

On April 14, 2015 the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) Ambush Election Rule took full force and effect. The rule will allow organizers to hold a union election within 14 days of filing the petition with the NLRB. Should a club receive notice of a union organizing campaign, it must immediately hire labor counsel dealing with management issues to prepare its defense.

NCA and our allies on the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW) have filed two lawsuits. Read more.

Department of Labor's New Guidance on Independent Contractor/Employee Classification

For some time, the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division has been working on establishing better guidance for the classification of workers as either employees or independent contractors (ICs). On July 15, 2015, DOL issued its new interpretation and it could have a significant impact on clubs that utilize caddies or any “independent contractors.” Read more.

Department of Labor's Overtime Rule

The Department of Labor (DOL) has been stopped by a federal district court judge in Texas. The ruling means that the rule WILL NOT go into effect on December 1, 2016 and that all clubs may keep their employees at their current salary and schedule without the concern of additional payroll expense. Read more.

Persuader Rule

On Monday, June 27, a U.S. District Court in Texas put the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) Persuader Rule on hold, giving clubs a much needed respite from the rule’s impact. The rule was supposed to go into effect this Friday, July 1. This stay will remain in effect until the case is finalized.

H-2B Visa Program

In many instances, employers seeking to hire workers for their high-season turn to the federal government’s H-2B visa program. This temporary worker program allows many NCA members to hire foreign workers to handle peak demands. Unfortunately, there has been concerted effort in the Department of Labor to minimize this program's effectiveness. NCA, as an executive committee member of the H-2B workforce coalition, has tried to ensure the needs of our industry have been met but the struggle continues. Read more.

The Health Care Reform Law

With the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision upholding the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) subsidy program, the decision now decreases leverage that NCA and allies have in fighting the ACA. NCA will continue to push for common sense changes to the law—like full-time employment being 40 hours per week and not 30. In an effort to ensure our member clubs are fully informed regarding their responsibilities under the law, NCA will periodically provide Alerts to keep you abreast of your upcoming obligations. Read more.

Challenges to Private Status

Private clubs across the country must take a long look at how they run their facilities to ensure they do not find themselves facing challenges to their private status. Cases in Washington state, Arizona and New York highlight how tricky this issue is and how clubs can be attacked.  To avoid these types of problems, it is imperative that clubs review their activities to ensure their actions cannot lead to a claim that they are a place of public accommodation and not a truly private facility. Read more.

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Club Industry Brief

NCA's free bi-weekly news digest is designed specifically for private club leaders. It covers industry news and trends and articles on golf, membership and operations for private clubs.