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115 ILCS 5/7

    (115 ILCS 5/7) (from Ch. 48, par. 1707)
    Sec. 7. Recognition of exclusive bargaining representatives - unit determination. The Board is empowered to administer the recognition of bargaining representatives of employees of public school districts, including employees of districts which have entered into joint agreements, or employees of public community college districts, or any State college or university, and any State agency whose major function is providing educational services, making certain that each bargaining unit contains employees with an identifiable community of interest and that no unit includes both professional employees and nonprofessional employees unless a majority of employees in each group vote for inclusion in the unit.
    (a) In determining the appropriateness of a unit, the Board shall decide in each case, in order to ensure employees the fullest freedom in exercising the rights guaranteed by this Act, the unit appropriate for the purpose of collective bargaining, based upon but not limited to such factors as historical pattern of recognition, community of interest, including employee skills and functions, degree of functional integration, interchangeability and contact among employees, common supervision, wages, hours and other working conditions of the employees involved, and the desires of the employees. Nothing in this Act, except as herein provided, shall interfere with or negate the current representation rights or patterns and practices of employee organizations which have historically represented employees for the purposes of collective bargaining, including but not limited to the negotiations of wages, hours and working conditions, resolutions of employees' grievances, or resolution of jurisdictional disputes, or the establishment and maintenance of prevailing wage rates, unless a majority of the employees so represented expresses a contrary desire under the procedures set forth in this Act. This Section, however, does not prohibit multi-unit bargaining. Notwithstanding the above factors, where the majority of public employees of a craft so decide, the Board shall designate such craft as a unit appropriate for the purposes of collective bargaining.
    The sole appropriate bargaining unit for tenured and tenure-track academic faculty at each campus of the University of Illinois shall be a unit that is comprised of non-supervisory academic faculty employed more than half-time and that includes all tenured and tenure-track faculty of that University campus employed by the board of trustees in all of the campus's undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools and degree and non-degree programs (with the exception of the college of medicine, the college of pharmacy, the college of dentistry, the college of law, and the college of veterinary medicine, each of which shall have its own separate unit), regardless of current or historical representation rights or patterns or the application of any other factors. Any decision, rule, or regulation promulgated by the Board to the contrary shall be null and void.
    (b) An educational employer shall voluntarily recognize a labor organization for collective bargaining purposes if that organization appears to represent a majority of employees in the unit. The employer shall post notice of its intent to so recognize for a period of at least 20 school days on bulletin boards or other places used or reserved for employee notices. Thereafter, the employer, if satisfied as to the majority status of the employee organization, shall send written notification of such recognition to the Board for certification. Any dispute regarding the majority status of a labor organization shall be resolved by the Board which shall make the determination of majority status.
    Within the 20 day notice period, however, any other interested employee organization may petition the Board to seek recognition as the exclusive representative of the unit in the manner specified by rules and regulations prescribed by the Board, if such interested employee organization has been designated by at least 15% of the employees in an appropriate bargaining unit which includes all or some of the employees in the unit intended to be recognized by the employer. In such event, the Board shall proceed with the petition in the same manner as provided in paragraph (c) of this Section.
    (c) A labor organization may also gain recognition as the exclusive representative by an election of the employees in the unit. Petitions requesting an election may be filed with the Board:
        (1) by an employee or group of employees or any labor
    
organizations acting on their behalf alleging and presenting evidence that 30% or more of the employees in a bargaining unit wish to be represented for collective bargaining or that the labor organization which has been acting as the exclusive bargaining representative is no longer representative of a majority of the employees in the unit; or
        (2) by an employer alleging that one or more labor
    
organizations have presented a claim to be recognized as an exclusive bargaining representative of a majority of the employees in an appropriate unit and that it doubts the majority status of any of the organizations or that it doubts the majority status of an exclusive bargaining representative.
    The Board shall investigate the petition and if it has reasonable cause to suspect that a question of representation exists, it shall give notice and conduct a hearing. If it finds upon the record of the hearing that a question of representation exists, it shall direct an election, which shall be held no later than 90 days after the date the petition was filed. Nothing prohibits the waiving of hearings by the parties and the conduct of consent elections.
    (c-5) The Board shall designate an exclusive representative for purposes of collective bargaining when the representative demonstrates a showing of majority interest by employees in the unit. If the parties to a dispute are without agreement on the means to ascertain the choice, if any, of employee organization as their representative, the Board shall ascertain the employees' choice of employee organization, on the basis of dues deduction authorization or other evidence, or, if necessary, by conducting an election. All evidence submitted by an employee organization to the Board to ascertain an employee's choice of an employee organization is confidential and shall not be submitted to the employer for review. The Board shall ascertain the employee's choice of employee organization within 120 days after the filing of the majority interest petition; however, the Board may extend time by an additional 60 days, upon its own motion or upon the motion of a party to the proceeding. If either party provides to the Board, before the designation of a representative, clear and convincing evidence that the dues deduction authorizations, and other evidence upon which the Board would otherwise rely to ascertain the employees' choice of representative, are fraudulent or were obtained through coercion, the Board shall promptly thereafter conduct an election. The Board shall also investigate and consider a party's allegations that the dues deduction authorizations and other evidence submitted in support of a designation of representative without an election were subsequently changed, altered, withdrawn, or withheld as a result of employer fraud, coercion, or any other unfair labor practice by the employer. If the Board determines that a labor organization would have had a majority interest but for an employer's fraud, coercion, or unfair labor practice, it shall designate the labor organization as an exclusive representative without conducting an election. If a hearing is necessary to resolve any issues of representation under this Section, the Board shall conclude its hearing process and issue a certification of the entire appropriate unit not later than 120 days after the date the petition was filed. The 120-day period may be extended one or more times by the agreement of all parties to a hearing to a date certain.
    (c-6) A labor organization or an employer may file a unit clarification petition seeking to clarify an existing bargaining unit. The Board shall conclude its investigation, including any hearing process deemed necessary, and issue a certification of clarified unit or dismiss the petition not later than 120 days after the date the petition was filed. The 120-day period may be extended one or more times by the agreement of all parties to a hearing to a date certain.
    (d) An order of the Board dismissing a representation petition, determining and certifying that a labor organization has been fairly and freely chosen by a majority of employees in an appropriate bargaining unit, determining and certifying that a labor organization has not been fairly and freely chosen by a majority of employees in the bargaining unit or certifying a labor organization as the exclusive representative of employees in an appropriate bargaining unit because of a determination by the Board that the labor organization is the historical bargaining representative of employees in the bargaining unit, is a final order. Any person aggrieved by any such order issued on or after the effective date of this amendatory Act of 1987 may apply for and obtain judicial review in accordance with provisions of the Administrative Review Law, as now or hereafter amended, except that such review shall be afforded directly in the Appellate Court of a judicial district in which the Board maintains an office. Any direct appeal to the Appellate Court shall be filed within 35 days from the date that a copy of the decision sought to be reviewed was served upon the party affected by the decision.
    No election may be conducted in any bargaining unit during the term of a collective bargaining agreement covering such unit or subdivision thereof, except the Board may direct an election after the filing of a petition between January 15 and March 1 of the final year of a collective bargaining agreement. Nothing in this Section prohibits the negotiation of a collective bargaining agreement covering a period not exceeding 3 years. A collective bargaining agreement of less than 3 years may be extended up to 3 years by the parties if the extension is agreed to in writing before the filing of a petition under this Section. In such case, the final year of the extension is the final year of the collective bargaining agreement. No election may be conducted in a bargaining unit, or subdivision thereof, in which a valid election has been held within the preceding 12 month period.
(Source: P.A. 95-331, eff. 8-21-07; 96-813, eff. 10-30-09.)