Decision on Request for General Statement of Policy and Guidance




[ v03 p334 ]
03:0334(53)PS
The decision of the Authority follows:


 3 FLRA No. 53
 
                                            Case No. 0-PS-11
 
          DECISION ON REQUEST FOR GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY AND
                                 GUIDANCE
 
    AS PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED, /1/ THE AUTHORITY RECEIVED A REQUEST FROM
 THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES (AFGE) THAT THE
 AUTHORITY ISSUE A GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY OR GUIDANCE AS TO THE
 OBLIGATION TO NEGOTIATE DURING THE TERM OF A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING
 AGREEMENT.
 
    THE SPECIFIC MATTER AT ISSUE, SUBSTANTIALLY AS STATED BY AFGE, IS THE
 FOLLOWING:
 
    DOES THE EMPLOYER, IN A BARGAINING RELATIONSHIP, HAVE AN OBLIGATION
 TO BARGAIN AT THE
 
    DEMAND OF THE EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE ON A MANDATORY SUBJECT FOR
 BARGAINING DURING THE TERM
 
    OF AN AGREEMENT, WHETHER THE MATTER UPON WHICH BARGAINING IS DEMANDED
 IS COVERED BY THE TERMS
 
    OF A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT OR NOT?  STYLED FROM THE
 EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE'S
 
    PERSPECTIVE, DOES THE UNION HAVE THE RIGHT TO DEMAND BARGAINING ON A
 MATTER COVERED BY THE
 
    TERMS OF AN AGREEMENT OR NOT COVERED IN AN AGREEMENT, AND HAVE THE
 EMPLOYER BARGAIN IN GOOD
 
    FAITH?
 
    BEFORE DECIDING WHETHER ISSUANCE OF A POLICY STATEMENT WAS WARRANTED,
 THE AUTHORITY INVITED INTERESTED PERSONS TO EXPRESS THEIR VIEWS IN
 WRITING WITH RESPECT TO THE QUESTION OF WHETHER THE AUTHORITY SHOULD
 ISSUE A POLICY STATEMENT ON THIS MATTER.
 
    THE AUTHORITY HAS CAREFULLY CONSIDERED THIS REQUEST, INCLUDING THE
 VIEWS SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO THE NOTICE ISSUED BY THE AUTHORITY, AND
 DETERMINED THAT THE REQUEST DOES NOT SATISFY THE STANDARDS GOVERNING THE
 ISSUANCE OF GENERAL STATEMENTS OF POLICY AND GUIDANCE SET FORTH IN
 SECTION 2427.5 OF THE AUTHORITY'S RULES AND REGULATIONS (45 FED.REG.
 3516(1980)), WHICH PROVIDE IN PERTINENT PART:
 
    SEC. 2427.5 STANDARDS GOVERNING ISSUANCE OF GENERAL STATEMENTS OF
 POLICY AND GUIDANCE.
 
    IN DECIDING WHETHER TO ISSUE A GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY OR
 GUIDANCE, THE AUTHORITY SHALL
 
    CONSIDER:
 
    (A) WHETHER THE QUESTION PRESENTED CAN MORE APPROPRIATELY BE RESOLVED
 BY OTHER MEANS;
 
    (B) WHERE OTHER MEANS ARE AVAILABLE, WHETHER AN AUTHORITY STATEMENT
 WOULD PREVENT THE
 
    PROLIFERATION OF CASES INVOLVING THE SAME OR SIMILAR QUESTION(.)
 
    THE MATTER RAISED IN THIS REQUEST FOR A GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY
 OR GUIDANCE CAN BE MORE APPROPRIATELY RESOLVED BY OTHER MEANS.  FOR
 EXAMPLE, THE PROCEDURES SET FORTH IN THE STATUTE AND APPROPRIATE
 REGULATIONS FOR THE RESOLUTION OF UNFAIR LABOR PRACTICES PROVIDE A
 MECHANISM FOR THE RESOLUTION OF THE VARIOUS FACTUAL ISSUES INVOLVED IN A
 CHARGE THAT A PARTY HAS REFUSED TO NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH AS REQUIRED
 BY THE STATUTE.