House and Senate GOP leaders plan votes in early March on a measure to block a National Labor Relations Board rule that would reduce the time for union representation elections. The rule, which cuts the election period to an average of 11 days from 39 now, became final in December and is to take effect on April 14.

Associated Builders and Contractors and other construction and business groups strongly oppose the regulation. They call it the "ambush" rule and say it wouldn't give companies enough time to prepare for elections. But the rule's backers, including unions and their congressional allies, say it would reduce unneeded litigation. NLRB Chairman Mark Gaston Pearce, a Democrat, said modernizing the elections "is far overdue." He added, "Both businesses and workers deserve a process that is effective, fair and free of unnecessary delays, which is exactly what this rule strives to accomplish."

The planned "resolution of disapproval" needs only a simple majority to pass and is likely to clear both chambers. But it faces an almost certain presidential veto.