When unions file ULP charges with the FLRA Office of the General Counsel, that office tries to settle a case before it takes the case to an Administrative Law Judge.  When the GC gets a good settlement, it posts a short summary of the deal for everyone to see on a page called, “OGC Settlement Corner.”  Because it is buried deep in the www.FLRA.gov site, we thought we would bring it to your attention.  We have also copied verbatim what is on the page today to give you a sense of how valuable this can be to persuading your own agency to settle ULP infractions.


Parties agree that Agency will Restore Duties to Employees and to Remove References to Failed Tests in Personnel Files

In this case, the agency unilaterally implemented a new requirement that food service/cafeteria line employees pass a test designed for dieticians concerning nutritional requirements, dietary restrictions, etc. If employees failed to attain at least a score of 85, they would be restricted from many of their duties. Only one employee passed. The Region resolved the case with a bilateral agreement, with the Agency agreeing to rescind the test requirement, restore employees to their duties and remove any references to the failed tests in their personnel files.  (11/13)

Parties agree that Agency will Rescind Letter of Reprimand Issued to Employee for Sending Emails Critical of Union

An individual filed this charge after she received a letter of reprimand for sending e-mails critical of the Union, and instructing her not to criticize the Union in the future. The background was an alleged assault committed by the Union president. But the letter of instruction broadly prohibited any speech critical of the Union. The Region negotiated a bilateral settlement, which rescinded the Letter and included e-mail and bulletin board notice postings.  (11/13)


Parties agree that Agency will Implement FSIP Order and to Submit Ongoing Dispute about Flight-line Smoking to an Arbitrator

In this case,the parties bargained to impasse on a policy concerning use of tobacco products. The FSIP ordered the parties to adopt the Union’s proposed language which, among other things, eliminated language that had been contained in previous policies banning smoking on the flight line. The Agency claimed that to allow smoking on the flight line would violate Air Force regulations and therefore it refused to implement the Panel-ordered language in toto. The Region issued complaint on the theory that the omission of the language concerning flight-line smoking did not mean that employees were free to smoke on the flight line in violation of AF regulations and even if it did, this would not give the Activity license to reject the entire Panel order. The Region obtained a settlement in this case whereby the Agency agreed to implement the FSIP’s order immediately and the parties jointly agreed to take their ongoing dispute about the flight-line smoking issue to an arbitrator.  (11/13)


Parties Agree that All Employees will Receive 2 Hours of Administrative Leave for Cancelled Holiday Party

The allegation related to the cancellation of a December 2011 holiday party that the Agency held every year. Those employees who could not attend had previously been given 4 hours of administrative leave. Respondent did not hold a holiday party in 2011 and did not give anyone 4 hours of administrative leave. The Agency, in 2012, had already returned to the practice of having holiday parties and giving those who could not attend 4 hours of administrative leave. Respondent agreed to give all employees 2 hours of administrative leave for the holiday party that did not happen in settlement of the ULP.  (9/13)


Parties Agree to Resume Negotiations

The Region obtained a post-complaint bilateral settlement in an unusual case CO. Several years ago, the parties began negotiations over a new CBA. The parties completed bargaining over a substantial part of the CBA, but agreed to suspend negotiations for several reasons. Recently, the Agency requested to continue those negotiations; the Union, however, continued to seek postponement. The Region issued complaint alleging that the Union refused to return to the bargaining table. The Settlement Agreement provided that the Union would resume negotiations in accordance with the original ground rules, and post an appropriate Notice to Employees and Members.  (11/13)


Parties Agree to MOU that Requires Agency to Pay the Grievant $810 Cash Award for Temporary Promotion

An employee at the Agency filed a grievance, alleging that he should have been temporarily promoted to a WG-10 Paint Inspector position. The grievance was arbitrated. The arbitrator ruled that the grievant should have been temporarily promoted to that position for 120 days, and she awarded backpay. The agency filed exceptions with the Authority, asserting that the award was contrary to law. But the Authority rejected the agency’s exceptions because the exceptions were procedurally defective. The agency sought reconsideration, and lost. The agency refused to comply with the arbitration award on the basis that payment was illegal. So the Union filed the ULP. With the Region’s assistance the parties resolved the ULP. In an MOU management agreed to pay the grievant a cash award in the amount of $810. This represented the pay increase of the 120-day temporary promotion, with interest.  (11/13)


About AdminUN

FEDSMILL staff has over 40 years of federal sector labor relations experience on the union as well as management side of the table and even some time as a neutral.
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