M.G.L. c.150E, §1(the public sector collective bargaining law) and M.G.L. c.150A, §3 (the private sector collective bargaining law), identify the employees that have the right of self organization and the right to engage in lawful concerted activities for the purpose of collective bargaining or their mutual aid or protection. Under M.G.L., c. 150E, §1 (Chapter 150E), the Division has jurisdiction over all employees "in the judicial or executive branch of government employed by a public employer, except elected officials, appointed officials, members of any board or Division, representatives of any public employer, including the heads, directors and executive and administrative officers of departments and agencies of any public employer, and other managerial employees or confidential employees, and members of the militia or national guard and employees of the Division, and officers and employees within the departments of the state secretary, state treasurer, state auditor and attorney general." Only appointed officials who are also managerial or confidential employees are excluded from the definition of public employee in Section 1 of Chapter 150E. City of Chicopee, 19 MLC 1765 (1993), aff'd, sub nom. City of Chicopee v. Division of Labor Relations, 38 Mass. App. Ct. 1006 (1995). Although legislative branch employees are not covered by Chapter 150E, the Division has applied the right of control test to determine whether particular employees are legislative employees. See, e.g., City of Somerville, 23 MLC 256 (1997); City of Lawrence, 13 MLC 1632 (1987).
Because the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has jurisdiction over most private employers, the Division's jurisdiction over private employers under M.G.L., c.150A (Chapter 150A) is limited to those cases where the NLRB has declined to exercise its jurisdiction. Foley, Hoag & Eliot, 2 MLC 1302 (1976); Mitrano Chevrolet, 2 MLC 1533 (1976). If there is a question about whether the Division or the NLRB has jurisdiction, a party may file a petition with the Division, and the Division will notify the parties that it is holding the petition in abeyance until the NLRB decides whether to assert jurisdiction over the petition. Questions of jurisdiction may be raised at any point in the processing of a representation case.
In addition to private sector parties that do not fall within the NLRB's jurisdiction, the Legislature has determined that the following employers and their employees fall under Chapter 150A, even though they are considered public employers: Massachusetts Port Authority; Massachusetts Turnpike Authority; Woods Hole, Martha's Vineyard Steamship Authority; the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority; and wholesale electric companies.