Department of Agriculture, Animal Plant Health Inspection Service, Plant Protection Quarantine, Pink Bollworm Rearing Facility (Activity) and National Federation of Federal Employees, Local 376, Independent (Labor Organization/Petitioner)



[ v06 p261 ]
06:0261(44)RO
The decision of the Authority follows:


 6 FLRA No. 44
 
 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE,
 ANIMAL PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE,
 PLANT PROTECTION QUARANTINE,
 PINK BOLLWORM REARING FACILITY
 Activity
 
 and
 
 NATIONAL FEDERATION OF FEDERAL EMPLOYEES
 LOCAL 376, INDEPENDENT
 Labor Organization/Petitioner
 
                                            Case No. 8-RO-26
 
         DECISION AND ORDER ON PETITION FOR CLARIFICATION OF UNIT
 
    AS A RESULT OF A PETITION DULY FILED WITH THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS
 AUTHORITY UNDER SECTION 7111(B)(2) OF THE FEDERAL SERVICE
 LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS STATUTE, 5 U.S.C. 7101-7135, A HEARING WAS
 HELD BEFORE A HEARING OFFICER OF THE AUTHORITY.  THE AUTHORITY HAS
 REVIEWED THE HEARING OFFICER'S RULINGS MADE AT THE HEARING AND FINDS
 THAT THEY ARE FREE FROM PREJUDICIAL ERROR.  THE RULINGS ARE HEREBY
 AFFIRMED.
 
    UPON THE ENTIRE RECORD IN THIS CASE, INCLUDING THE BRIEF FILED BY THE
 ACTIVITY, THE AUTHORITY FINDS:  THE PETITIONER, NATIONAL FEDERATION OF
 FEDERAL EMPLOYEES LOCAL 376, INDEPENDENT (HEREINAFTER NFFE), SEEKS TO
 CLARIFY AN EXISTING EXCLUSIVELY RECOGNIZED UNIT OF ALL NONPROFESSIONAL
 GENERAL SCHEDULE EMPLOYEES, WAGE GRADE EMPLOYEES, INCLUDING TEMPORARY
 EMPLOYEES WITH APPOINTMENTS OF 1 YEAR OR MORE EMPLOYED AT THE PINK
 BOLLWORM REARING FACILITY, PHOENIX, ARIZONA /1/ BY INCLUDING WITHIN THAT
 UNIT THOSE TEMPORARY AND INTERMITTENT EMPLOYEES GENERALLY DESCRIBED AS
 LETTER OF AUTHORITY (LA) EMPLOYEES, WHO HAVE APPOINTMENTS LIMITED TO 6
 MONTHS BUT WHO HAVE WORKED LESS THAN 6 MONTHS.  /2/ ALTHOUGH THE
 PETITIONER FILED A REPRESENTATION PETITION IN THE INSTANT CASE, IT IS
 CLEAR FROM THE RECORD THAT THE PETITION SEEKS A DETERMINATION THAT THE
 LA EMPLOYEES ARE CONSIDERED PART OF THE EXISTING UNIT ALREADY
 REPRESENTED AND DOES NOT RAISE A QUESTION CONCERNING REPRESENTATION WITH
 REGARD TO THE UNIT IN QUESTION.  ACCORDINGLY, THE DECISION HEREIN WILL
 BE LIMITED TO THE ONLY ISSUE BEFORE THE AUTHORITY;  THAT IS, WHETHER THE
 EXISTING UNIT SHOULD BE CLARIFIED TO INCLUDE LA EMPLOYEES, WITH
 APPOINTMENTS LIMITED TO 6 MONTHS, BUT WHO HAVE WORKED LESS THAN 6
 MONTHS.
 
    THE ACTIVITY CONTENDS, CONTRARY TO THE PETITIONER, THAT THE LA
 EMPLOYEES WITH LESS THAN 6 MONTHS OF EMPLOYMENT BE EXCLUDED BECAUSE THEY
 DO NOT SHARE A COMMUNITY OF INTEREST WITH THE REST OF THE BARGAINING
 UNIT.  /3/
 
    THE RECORD REVEALS THAT THE FACILITY HEREIN EMPLOYS THE LA EMPLOYEES
 ON A PEAK PRODUCTION BASIS ONLY FROM ABOUT MID-MARCH TO EARLY OCTOBER.
 THIS PERIOD CORRESPONDS TO THE ACTIVITY'S MISSION, WHICH IS TO FURNISH,
 WHETHER BY PRODUCTION OR CONTRACT, STERILE PINK