Case in point:

The battle between the Somerset Valley Rehabilitation and Nursing Center and a union that wants to organize its workers is continuing.

The Route 22 facility had filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board alleging 1199SEIU of United Healthcare Workers East engaged in campaign misconduct before the workers voted whether to join the union on Sept. 2, 2010.

On Jan. 19, a hearing officer at the National Labor Relations Board, after 10 days of testimony, found that the union did not engage in any unlawful conduct in the campaign.

Peter Ward, director of corporate communications for HealthBridge Management, the facility's parent company, said the findings will be appealed.

"This case now moves to the National Labor Relations Board in Washington, which will review the hearing officer's report and recommendations and make its own decision," Ward wrote in a statement on Tuesday. "Somerset Valley will be filing exceptions with the National Labor Relations Board to the hearing officer's report and recommendation, as we believe the hearing officer's recommendations are in error."

Ward said it may take "several months or longer" for a final decision to be made.

But union officials declared victory with the hearing officer's decision.

"The board's decision against . . . baseless objections is a huge victory for nursing home caregivers and their residents," said Milly Silva, executive vice president of Local 1199SEIU, adding that was time for Somerset Valley "to accept the workers' decision to form a union so that we can move forward and negotiate a contract with improvements to working conditions and resident care."

But Ward said the union's declaration of victory was premature.

"Since the National Labor Relations Board has not issued a decision on this case, 1199SEIU has not been certified by the National Labor Relations Board to represent the employees at Somerset Valley and Somerset Valley does not have any obligation to recognize or bargain with 1199SEIU," Ward said.