These FAQs will be updated with
additional information as the state continues to implement the new law. These
FAQs are not intended as legal advice. If you have questions regarding this
information, please refer to Senate Bill 135, Nevada Revised Statutes, Nevada
Administrative Code, or contact your legal counsel.
FOR EMPLOYEES, EMPLOYER AGENCIES, AND LABOR ORGANIZATIONS
Do Nevada state employees now have collective bargaining?
The 2019 Nevada legislature passed Senate Bill 135, which authorizes collective bargaining for certain state
employees, and Governor Sisolak signed the bill into law on June 12. The
Government Employee-Management Relations Board (EMRB) and the Department of
Administration (which houses the Division of Human Resource Management, or
DHRM) are working to implement the provisions of the new law.
What is collective bargaining?
Collective bargaining is a method
of determining conditions of employment by negotiations between representatives
of the employer (the employer in this case is the Executive Department of the
state) and representatives of employees (in this case, labor organizations
would represent employees). This includes topics like wages and hours and how
to resolve questions that arise under a negotiated agreement.
Which employees does collective bargaining apply to?
Collective bargaining applies to:
employed in the classified service of the state
- Those employed by the Nevada
System of Higher Education in the classified service
employed by the Nevada System of Higher Education who are required to be paid
in accordance with the same pay plan as those in the classified service of the state
Will employees be required to join a labor organization and/or engage in collective bargaining?
No. Employees have
the right to:
- Organize, form, join
and assist labor organizations, engage in collective bargaining and
supplemental bargaining through exclusive representatives and engage in other
concerted activities, AND
- Refrain from
engaging in such activity
What is the timeline for implementing collective bargaining?
The state is working on
implementation right now, and it is anticipated that collective bargaining
agreements could be in place in time for the 2021 legislative session.
How will organizing work?
The Government Employee-Management Relations Board
will establish one or more bargaining units for each of the following
- Labor, maintenance, custodial and
institutional employees, including, without limitation, employees of penal and correctional
institutions who are not responsible for security at those institutions
- Administrative and clerical
employees, including, without limitation, legal support staff and employees
whose work involves general office work, or keeping or examining records and
- Technical aides to professional
employees, including, without limitation, computer programmers, tax examiners,
conservation employees and regulatory inspectors
- Professional employees who do not
provide health care, including, without limitation, engineers, scientists and
- Professional employees who provide
health care, including, without limitation, physical therapists and other
employees in medical and other professions related to health
- Employees, other than professional
employees, who provide health care and personal care, including, without
limitation, employees who provide care for children
- Category I peace officers
- Category II peace officers
- Category III peace officers
- Supervisory employees from all
Once those bargaining units are
established, labor organizations can initiate the process to become the
exclusive representative for a bargaining unit. Interested employees within the
units can vote to make a labor organization their exclusive representative.
Once a bargaining unit has exclusive representation, they can begin negotiating
collective bargaining agreements.
What is exclusive representation?
representative” means a labor organization that, as a result of its designation
by the Board, has the exclusive right to represent all the employees within a
bargaining unit and to engage in collective bargaining with the Executive
Department concerning wages, hours and other terms and conditions of employment
for those employees.
How does a labor organization become the exclusive representative for one or more bargaining units?
a labor organization receives a majority of the votes cast at the initial
election or at any runoff election, the Board shall designate the labor organization
as the exclusive representative of the bargaining unit.
no labor organization is designated as the
exclusive representative of a bargaining unit and a labor organization files
with the Board a list of its membership or other evidence showing that the
labor organization has been authorized to serve as a representative by more
than 50 percent of the employees within the bargaining unit, the Board shall
designate the labor organization as the exclusive representative of the
bargaining unit without ordering an election.
no labor organization is designated as the exclusive representative of a
bargaining unit, the Board shall order an election to be conducted within the
bargaining unit if:
labor organization can file with the Board a written request for an election
which includes a list of its membership or other evidence showing that it has
been authorized to serve as a representative by at least 30 percent but not
more than 50 percent of the employees within the bargaining unit.
Where can union participation or election literature be passed out?
Labor organizations may pass out
literature in any designated state work locations including break rooms, lobby,
parking lot, conference rooms, etc.
State employees may pass out labor
organization literature at the workplace, as long as it does not cause a
disruption to the workplace.
Can employees display labor organization materials on their clothing while in the workplace?
employees may wear buttons/pins promoting association membership on their
clothing, including uniforms, as long as it is in compliance with his or her
department's dress code, does not present a safety hazard, and is not
disruptive to the workplace.
Can employees promote or discuss organizing or related issues during work hours?
duty hours, employees should remain focused on their work. NAC 284.766 states:
Each employee shall, during his or her hours of duty as an employee and subject
to such other laws or regulations as pertain thereto, devote his or her full
time, attention and efforts to state employment. Employees may use break time
or lunch periods to discuss or engage in issues related to organizing and
Which issues may be collectively bargained?
Senate Bill 135 outlines what may
be collectively bargained, including:
- A process to resolve employee
grievances relating to employment
- Salary or wage rates or other
forms of direct monetary compensation
- Sick leave
- Vacation leave
- Other paid or nonpaid leaves of
- Total hours of work required of an
employee on each workday or workweek
- Total number of days’ work
required of an employee in a work year
- Discharge and disciplinary
- The method used to classify
employees in bargaining units
- Deduction of dues for the
recognized labor organization
- Protection of employees in the
bargaining unit from discrimination because of participation in recognized
- Grievance and arbitration procedures
for resolution of disputes relating to interpretation or application of
collective bargaining agreements
- Duration of collective bargaining
- Safety of the employee
- Procedures for reduction in
- Procedures for the reopening of collective
bargaining agreements for additional, further, new or supplementary
negotiations during periods of fiscal emergency
Which issues may not be collectively bargained?
Senate Bill 135 outlines what may
not be collectively bargained, including:
- The right to hire, direct, assign
or transfer an employee, but excluding the right to assign or transfer an
employee as a form of discipline
- The right to reduce in force or
lay off any employee because of lack of work or lack of money
- The right to determine appropriate
staffing levels and work performance standards, except for safety
- The right to determine the content
of the workday, including without limitation workload factors, except for
- The right to determine the quality
and quantity of services to be offered to the public
- The right to determine the means
and methods of offering those services
- Safety of the public
Since some of the bargaining units will include staff from various agencies, will agency-specific business needs be addressed?
Senate Bill 135 provides for “supplemental bargaining” (Sec. 42), which would address terms and
conditions of employment that uniquely affect fewer than all the employees within a bargaining unit.
FOR AGENCY EMPLOYERS
Will there be a cost?
The Government Employee-Management Relations Board is
required by the new law to charge and collect a fee from the Executive
Department in an amount not to exceed $10 for each employee of the Executive
Department who was employed by the Executive Department during the first pay
period of the immediately preceding fiscal year.The money received from
the fees may be used only to carry out the duties of the Board.
What principles should management representatives (e.g., supervisors, managers, human resources) follow when communicating about collective bargaining with employees?
appropriate, employees can be provided with known, objective facts. However, it
would be inappropriate for management representatives (e.g., supervisor,
managers, human resources) to make statements that could be interpreted as
trying to influence an employee regarding labor organizations.
FOR LABOR ORGANIZATIONS
Where can I find information on the state employees who now have collective bargaining rights?
The Department of Administration is working
to build a roster of eligible state employees with name, address, job
classification, and work location to make available to labor organizations
interested in becoming an exclusive representative for one or more bargaining
units. Once available, the roster will be updated monthly to reflect staffing
To be placed on an email distribution list to
receive the initial roster and monthly updates, please send the name of your
labor organization, first and last name of a designated contact, and the email
address at which you would like to receive the roster to: firstname.lastname@example.org