10:0453(78)CA - VA Regional Office, Denver, CO and AFGE Local 1557 -- 1982 FLRAdec CA



[ v10 p453 ]
10:0453(78)CA
The decision of the Authority follows:


 10 FLRA No. 78
 
 VETERANS ADMINISTRATION REGIONAL OFFICE,
 DENVER, COLORADO
 Respondent
 
 and
 
 AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
 EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557
 Charging Party
 
                                            Case No. 7-CA-365
 
                            DECISION AND ORDER
 
    THE ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGE ISSUED HIS DECISION IN THE
 ABOVE-ENTITLED PROCEEDING, FINDING THAT THE RESPONDENT HAD NOT ENGAGED
 IN THE UNFAIR LABOR PRACTICES ALLEGED IN THE COMPLAINT AND RECOMMENDING
 THAT THE COMPLAINT BE DISMISSED IN ITS ENTIRETY.  THEREAFTER, THE
 GENERAL COUNSEL FILED EXCEPTIONS TO THE JUDGE'S DECISION AND A
 SUPPORTING BRIEF, AND THE RESPONDENT FILED AN OPPOSITION THERETO.  /1/
 
    PURSUANT TO SECTION 2423.29 OF THE AUTHORITY'S RULES AND REGULATIONS
 AND SECTION 7118 OF THE FEDERAL SERVICE LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS
 STATUTE (THE STATUTE), THE AUTHORITY HAS REVIEWED THE RULINGS OF THE
 JUDGE MADE AT THE HEARING AND FINDS THAT NO PREJUDICIAL ERROR WAS
 COMMITTED.  THE RULINGS ARE HEREBY AFFIRMED.  UPON CONSIDERATION OF THE
 JUDGE'S DECISION AND THE ENTIRE RECORD, THE AUTHORITY HEREBY ADOPTS THE
 JUDGE'S FINDINGS, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ONLY TO THE EXTENT
 CONSISTENT HEREWITH.
 
    THE JUDGE FOUND THAT THE RESPONDENT DID NOT VIOLATE SECTION
 7116(A)(1), (5) AND (8) OF THE STATUTE, /2/ AS ALLEGED IN THE COMPLAINT,
 BY REQUIRING THE CHARGING PARTY, AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
 EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557 (THE UNION), TO PAY FOR "A COPY OF EACH
 DOCUMENT" REQUESTED FROM AN EMPLOYEE'S PERSONNEL FOLDER IN CONNECTION
 WITH A GRIEVANCE FILED BY THE EMPLOYEE UNDER THE PARTIES' NEGOTIATED
 AGREEMENT.  WHILE THE JUDGE FOUND THAT THE DATA REQUESTED BY THE UNION
 AS THE EMPLOYEE'S EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE WAS NECESSARY AND RELEVANT TO
 ENABLE THE UNION TO FULFILL ITS LEGITIMATE REPRESENTATIONAL ROLE IN
 PROCESSING THE EMPLOYEE'S GRIEVANCE, AND CONCLUDED THAT UNDER SECTION
 7114(A)(1) OF THE STATUTE /3/ THE UNION WAS ENTITLED TO "ACCESS TO THE
 DOCUMENTS CONTAINED IN THE FILE," HE REJECTED THE GENERAL COUNSEL'S
 ASSERTION THAT THE RESPONDENT WAS OBLIGATED UNDER SECTION 7114(B)(4) OF
 THE STATUTE /4/ TO PROVIDE THE UNION A COPY OF THE REQUESTED DATA FREE
 OF CHARGE.  IN THIS LATTER REGARD, THE JUDGE DETERMINED, AMONG OTHER
 THINGS, THAT "(S)ECTION 7114(B)(4) MERELY REQUIRES THAT AN AGENCY
 'FURNISH' DATA AND IS SILENT AS TO THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH THE
 INFORMATION IS TO BE FURNISHED, INCLUDING WHETHER A CHARGE MAY BE
 EXACTED FOR THE SERVICE PROVIDED;" AND THAT "(T)HE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY
 OF THE STATUTE REGARDING THIS SECTION DOES NOT ADDRESS THE MATTER OF A
 CHARGE FOR DATA." FINDING NO PERSUASIVE ARGUMENT IN SUPPORT OF THE
 EXISTENCE OF AN OBLIGATION UNDER THE STATUTE ON THE PART OF THE
 RESPONDENT TO PROVIDE THE UNION A COPY OF THE DOCUMENTS IN QUESTION
 WITHOUT CHARGE, THE JUDGE CONCLUDED THAT THE RESPONDENT HAD NO SUCH
 OBLIGATION AND THEREFORE DISMISSED THE COMPLAINT IN ITS ENTIRETY.
 
    IN AGREEMENT WITH THE JUDGE, AND NOTING THE ABSENCE OF ANY CONTENTION
 TO THE CONTRARY, THE AUTHORITY FINDS THAT THE DATA REQUESTED BY THE
 UNION WAS NECESSARY AND RELEVANT IN ORDER TO ENABLE THE UNION TO
 EFFECTIVELY CARRY OUT ITS STATUTORY REPRESENTATIONAL OBLIGATION IN THE
 PROCESSING OF AN EMPLOYEE GRIEVANCE.  SEE, E.G., BUREAU OF ALCOHOL,
 TOBACCO AND FIREARMS, NATIONAL OFFICE AND WESTERN REGION, SAN FRANCISCO,
 CALIFORNIA, 8 FLRA NO. 108(1982).  HOWEVER, CONTRARY TO THE JUDGE'S
 CONCLUSION AND IN ACCORDANCE WITH A RECENT DECISION INVOLVING THE SAME
 PARTIES, THE AUTHORITY FINDS THAT THE UNION'S RIGHT TO RECEIVE SUCH DATA
 AND THE RESPONDENT'S OBLIGATION TO FURNISH SAME ARE DERIVED FROM SECTION
 7114(B)(4) OF THE STATUTE RATHER THAN FROM SECTION 7114(A)(1).  VETERANS
 ADMINISTRATION REGIONAL OFFICE, DENVER, COLORADO, 7 FLRA NO.  100(1982).
 
    SECTION 7114 OF THE STATUTE PRESCRIBES THE REPRESENTATION RIGHTS AND
 DUTIES OF THE PARTIES IN A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING RELATIONSHIP.  PART OF
 AN AGENCY'S STATUTORY DUTY TO NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH, AS SET FORTH IN
 SECTION 7114(B)(4) IS "TO FURNISH TO THE EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE . . .
 UPON REQUEST AND, TO THE EXTENT NOT PROHIBITED BY LAW, DATA" AS FURTHER
 DESCRIBED THEREIN.  /5/ IN USING THE TERM "FURNISH," CONGRESS DID NOT
 SPECIFY EITHER IN THE STATUTE OR ITS LEGISLATIVE HISTORY WHETHER AN
 AGENCY MAY ASSESS A CHARGE FOR SUCH DATA REQUESTED BY AN EXCLUSIVE
 REPRESENTATIVE.  HOWEVER, NOTING PARTICULARLY THAT THE OBLIGATION TO
 FURNISH SUCH DATA IS AN INTEGRAL PART OF AN AGENCY'S DUTY TO NEGOTIATE
 IN GOOD FAITH UNDER SECTION 7114(B)(4), AS MANDATED BY CONGRESS, THE
 AUTHORITY CONCLUDES THAT IT WOULD FURTHER CONGRESSIONAL INTENT TO
 REQUIRE AN AGENCY TO FURNISH THE DATA, SUBJECT TO THE LIMITATIONS AND
 CONDITIONS OF SECTION 7114(B)(4)(A), (B) AND (C), WITHOUT CHARGE TO THE
 EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE.
 
    SUCH CONCLUSION IS ALSO CONSISTENT WITH THE COMMON MEANING OF THE
 TERM "FURNISH." IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE GENERAL RULES OF STATUTORY
 CONSTRUCTION, WORDS IN THE STATUTE ARE GIVEN THEIR COMMON MEANING UNLESS
 A CONTRARY LEGISLATIVE INTENT IS INDICATED.  /6/ THERE IS NOTHING IN THE
 LANGUAGE OF THE STATUTE OR IN THE RELEVANT LEGISLATIVE HISTORY WHICH
 SUGGESTS THAT THE TERM "FURNISH" AS USED IN SECTION 7114(B)(4) SHOULD BE
 GIVEN ANY MEANING OTHER THAN THAT COMMONLY ASCRIBED TO IT.  IN THIS
 REGARD, THE COMMON MEANING OF THE TERM "FURNISH" IS TO PROVIDE, SUPPLY
 OR GIVE.  /7/ THUS, IN THE CONTEXT OF SECTION 7114(B)(4), THE
 AUTHORITY'S CONCLUSION THAT AN AGENCY'S OBLIGATION TO "FURNISH" THE
 EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE WITH A COPY OF NECESSARY DATA UPON REQUEST
 MEANS TO GIVE SUCH DATA WITHOUT COST TO THE EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE IS
 CONSISTENT WITH THE LITERAL LANGUAGE OF THE STATUTE.  /8/
 
    IN ADDITION, THE FOREGOING CONCLUSION GIVES MEANING TO SECTION
 7114(B)(4), WHEREAS A CONTRARY INTERPRETATION WOULD RENDER THAT SECTION
 MERELY DUPLICATIVE OF RIGHTS ALREADY ESTABLISHED UNDER THE FREEDOM OF
 INFORMATION ACT (FOIA).  THUS, UNDER THE FOIA, LABOR ORGANIZATIONS (AS
 WELL AS OTHER PERSONS) ALREADY WERE ENTITLED TO REQUEST AND RECEIVE
 CERTAIN INFORMATION FROM AGENCIES UPON PAYMENT OF A FEE FOR SUCH
 MATERIAL PRIOR TO ENACTMENT OF THE STATUTE.  IF SECTION 7114(B)(4) OF
 THE STATUTE WERE INTERPRETED TO PERMIT AGENCIES TO REQUIRE THE EXCLUSIVE
 REPRESENTATIVES OF THEIR EMPLOYEES TO PAY A FEE FOR A COPY OF SUCH
 MATERIAL NOTWITHSTANDING THE PARTIES' SPECIAL BARGAINING RELATIONSHIP,
 SECTION 7114(B)(4) WOULD BE RENDERED ESSENTIALLY MEANINGLESS.  THAT
 CONGRESS COULD NOT HAVE INTENDED SUCH A RESULT, BUT RATHER TO GIVE
 MEANING TO BOTH LAWS, /9/ FURTHER SUPPORTS THE AUTHORITY'S CONCLUSION
 HEREIN.
 
    ACCORDINGLY, CONTRARY TO THE JUDGE, THE AUTHORITY CONCLUDES THAT THE
 RESPONDENT HEREIN VIOLATED ITS DUTY TO NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH, AND
 FAILED TO COMPLY WITH THE REQUIREMENTS OF SECTION 7114(B)(4), IN
 VIOLATION OF SECTION 7116(A)(1), (5) AND (8) OF THE STATUTE, BY
 REQUIRING THE UNION TO PAY FOR A COPY OF NECESSARY DATA REQUESTED BY THE
 UNION /10/ IN ORDER TO FULFILL ITS REPRESENTATIONAL ROLE IN CONNECTION
 WITH AN EMPLOYEE'S GRIEVANCE.  /11/
 
                                   ORDER
 
    PURSUANT TO SECTION 2423.29 OF THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS
 AUTHORITY'S RULES AND REGULATIONS AND SECTION 7118 OF THE STATUTE, IT IS
 HEREBY ORDERED THAT THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION REGIONAL OFFICE, DENVER,
 COLORADO, SHALL:
 
    1.  CEASE AND DESIST FROM:
 
    (A) FAILING OR REFUSING TO PROVIDE, WITHOUT CHARGE, TO THE AMERICAN
 FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557, THE EMPLOYEE'S
 EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE, A COPY OF REQUESTED DATA WHICH IS NECESSARY
 AND RELEVANT TO ENABLE SUCH EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE TO PERFORM ITS
 REPRESENTATIONAL DUTIES IN CONNECTION WITH AN EMPLOYEE'S GRIEVANCE.
 
    (B) IN ANY LIKE OR RELATED MANNER INTERFERING WITH, RESTRAINING, OR
 COERCING EMPLOYEES IN THE EXERCISE OF THEIR RIGHTS ASSURED BY THE
 FEDERAL SERVICE LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS STATUTE.
 
    2.  TAKE THE FOLLOWING AFFIRMATIVE ACTION IN ORDER TO EFFECTUATE THE
 PURPOSES AND POLICIES OF THE FEDERAL SERVICE LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS
 STATUTE:
 
    (A) REPAY TO THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES,
 AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557, THE EMPLOYEE'S EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE, THE $9.45
 CHARGED FOR NECESSARY AND RELEVANT DATA REQUESTED BY THE EXCLUSIVE
 REPRESENTATIVE IN ORDER TO PERFORM ITS REPRESENTATIONAL DUTIES IN
 CONNECTION WITH AN EMPLOYEE'S GRIEVANCE.
 
    (B) POST AT ITS FACILITIES AT THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION REGIONAL
 OFFICE, DENVER, COLORADO, COPIES OF THE ATTACHED NOTICE ON FORMS TO BE
 FURNISHED BY THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY.  UPON RECEIPT OF
 SUCH FORMS THEY SHALL BE SIGNED BY THE DIRECTOR OF THE VETERANS
 ADMINISTRATION, DENVER REGIONAL OFFICE, AND SHALL BE POSTED AND
 MAINTAINED BY HIM FOR 60 CONSECUTIVE DAYS THEREAFTER, IN CONSPICUOUS
 PLACES, INCLUDING ALL BULLETIN BOARDS AND OTHER PLACES WHERE NOTICES TO
 EMPLOYEES ARE CUSTOMARILY POSTED.  THE DIRECTOR SHALL TAKE REASONABLE
 STEPS TO INSURE THAT SUCH NOTICES ARE NOT ALTERED, DEFACED, OR COVERED
 BY ANY OTHER MATERIAL.
 
    (C) PURSUANT TO SECTION 2423.30 OF THE AUTHORITY'S RULES AND
 REGULATIONS, NOTIFY THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR, REGION VII, FEDERAL LABOR
 RELATIONS AUTHORITY, IN WRITING, WITHIN 30 DAYS FROM THE DATE OF THIS
 ORDER, AS TO WHAT STEPS HAVE BEEN TAKEN TO COMPLY HEREWITH.
 
    ISSUED, WASHINGTON, D.C., NOVEMBER 16, 1982
 
                       RONALD W. HAUGHTON, CHAIRMAN
                       HENRY B. FRAZIER III, MEMBER
                       LEON B. APPLEWHAITE, MEMBER
                       FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
 
 
 
 
 
 
        NOTICE TO ALL EMPLOYEES PURSUANT TO A DECISION AND ORDER OF
 
           THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY AND IN ORDER TO
 
          EFFECTUATE THE POLICIES OF CHAPTER 71 OF TITLE 5 OF THE
 
            UNITED STATES CODE FEDERAL SERVICE LABOR-MANAGEMENT
 
              RELATIONS WE HEREBY NOTIFY OUR EMPLOYEES THAT:
 
    WE WILL NOT FAIL OR REFUSE TO PROVIDE, WITHOUT CHARGE, TO THE
 AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557, THE
 EMPLOYEES' EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE, A COPY OF REQUESTED DATA WHICH IS
 NECESSARY AND RELEVANT TO ENABLE SUCH EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE TO
 PERFORM ITS REPRESENTATIONAL DUTIES IN CONNECTION WITH AN EMPLOYEE'S
 GRIEVANCE.
 
    WE WILL NOT IN ANY LIKE OR RELATED MANNER INTERFERE WITH, RESTRAIN,
 OR COERCE OUR EMPLOYEES IN THE EXERCISE OF THEIR RIGHTS ASSURED BY THE
 STATUTE.
 
    WE WILL REPAY TO THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES,
 AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557, THE EMPLOYEES' EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE, THE $9.45
 CHARGED FOR NECESSARY AND RELEVANT DATA REQUESTED BY THE EXCLUSIVE
 REPRESENTATIVE IN ORDER TO PERFORM ITS REPRESENTATIONAL DUTIES IN
 CONNECTION WITH AN EMPLOYEES' GRIEVANCE.
 
                           (AGENCY OR ACTIVITY)
 
    DATED:  BY:  (SIGNATURE)
 
    THIS NOTICE MUST REMAIN POSTED FOR 60 CONSECUTIVE DAYS FROM THE DATE
 OF POSTING AND MUST NOT BE ALTERED, DEFACED, OR COVERED BY ANY OTHER
 MATERIAL.
 
    IF THE EMPLOYEES HAVE ANY QUESTION CONCERNING THIS NOTICE, OR
 COMPLIANCE WITH ANY OF ITS PROVISIONS, THEY MAY COMMUNICATE DIRECTLY
 WITH THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR, FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY, REGION
 VII, WHOSE ADDRESS IS:  FEDERAL BUILDING AND U.S.  CUSTOMS HOUSE, 1531
 STOUT STREET, SUITE 301, DENVER, CO 80202, AND WHOSE TELEPHONE NUMBER
 IS:  (816) 374-2199.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 -------------------- ALJ$ DECISION FOLLOWS --------------------
 
    DOUGLAS D. DOANNE, ESQ.
                 FOR THE RESPONDENT
 
    GAVIN K. LODGE, ESQ.
                 FOR THE GENERAL COUNSEL
 
    BEFORE:  SALVATORE J. ARRIGO
                 ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGE
 
                             CASE NO. 7-CA-365
 
                                 DECISION
 
                           STATEMENT OF THE CASE
 
    THIS CASE AROSE UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE FEDERAL LABOR-MANAGEMENT
 RELATIONS STATUTE, 92 STAT. 1191, 5 U.S.C. 7101 ET SEQ. (HEREIN REFERRED
 TO AS THE STATUTE) AND THE RULES AND REGULATIONS ISSUED THEREUNDER.
 
    UPON AN UNFAIR LABOR PRACTICE CHARGE FILED BY THE AMERICAN FEDERATION
 OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO, LOCAL 1557 (HEREIN THE UNION) AGAINST
 THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION REGIONAL OFFICE, DENVER, COLORADO (HEREIN
 THE RESPONDENT) ON JANUARY 7, 1980, THE GENERAL COUNSEL OF THE FEDERAL
 LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY, BY THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR FOR REGION 7, ISSUED
 A COMPLAINT AND NOTICE OF HEARING ON MAY 6, 1980 ALLEGING RESPONDENT
 ENGAGED IN UNFAIR LABOR PRACTICE CONDUCT VIOLATIVE OF SECTIONS
 7116(A)(1), (5), AND (8) OF THE STATUTE.  ESSENTIALLY, THE COMPLAINT
 ALLEGES RESPONDENT VIOLATED THE STATUTE BY COMPELLING THE UNION TO PAY
 FOR COPIES OF DATA THE UNION REQUIRED IN THE PERFORMANCE OF ITS
 REPRESENTATIONAL ROLE.
 
    A HEARING ON THE COMPLAINT WAS CONDUCTED ON JUNE 11, 1980 AT WHICH
 TIME THE GENERAL COUNSEL AND RESPONDENT WERE REPRESENTED BY COUNSEL AND
 AFFORDED FULL OPPORTUNITY TO ADDUCE EVIDENCE AND CALL, EXAMINE AND
 CROSS-EXAMINE WITNESSES AND ARGUE ORALLY.  BRIEFS WERE FILED AND HAVE
 BEEN DULY CONSIDERED.
 
    UPON THE ENTIRE RECORD IN THIS MATTER, MY OBSERVATION OF THE
 WITNESSES AND THEIR DEMEANOR, AND FROM MY EVALUATION OF THE EVIDENCE, I
 MAKE THE FOLLOWING:
 
                  FINDINGS OF FACT AND CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
 
    AT ALL TIMES MATERIAL HEREIN THE UNION HAS BEEN THE EXCLUSIVE
 COLLECTIVE BARGAINING REPRESENTATIVE OF RESPONDENT'S NONPROFESSIONAL AND
 PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES.  IN LATE 1979 UNION STEWARD ROBERT MCGURRAN WAS
 ASKED BY EMPLOYEE EVELYN COLLIER TO REPRESENT HER IN PROCESSING A
 GRIEVANCE AGAINST RESPONDENT.  COLLIER'S GRIEVANCE CONCERNED HER FAILURE
 TO BE PROMOTED TO A JOURNEYMAN ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE ANALYST.  AFTER A
 VERBAL STEP 1 GRIEVANCE WAS FILED ON DECEMBER 31, 1979, MCGURRAN MET
 WITH PAUL MICHAEL, RESPONDENT'S FINANCIAL MANAGER.  AS PART OF HIS
 INVESTIGATION OF COLLIER'S GRIEVANCE, MCGURRAN ASKED TO SEE ANY
 COUNSELLING RECORDS RESPONDENT HAD IN ITS POSSESSION AND WAS SHOWN A
 SUBSTANTIAL FILE CONTAINING, WHAT APPEARED TO MCGURRAN, "SEVERAL HUNDRED
 PAPERS." IN REVIEWING THIS FILE WITH MCGURRAN, COLLIER NOTICED MANY
 PAGES WHICH SHE CLAIMED SHE HAD NEVER SEEN PREVIOUSLY.  MCGURRAN DECIDED
 THAT TO PURSUE THE MATTER FURTHER AND DETERMINE THE SOUNDNESS OF
 COLLIER'S GRIEVANCE HE WOULD NEED COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS IN THE FILE.
 ACCORDINGLY, ON DECEMBER 13, 1979 MCGURRAN SUBMITTED A WRITTEN REQUEST
 TO MICHAEL FOR " . . . A COPY OF EACH DOCUMENT (ANY AND ALL WRITTEN
 RECORDS) CONTAINED IN THE FILE YOU ARE MAINTAINING ON MS. COLLIER AND IS
 THE SUBJECT OF A GRIEVANCE . . . " THE REQUEST INDICATED IT WAS BEING
 FILED UNDER "TITLE VII, PL 95-454(5)(B)(4)" AND CONTAINED A NOTATION,
 SIGNED BY COLLIER, STATING "MR. MCGURRAN IS MY REPRESENTATIVE IN THE
 ABOVE GRIEVANCE.  I DO NOT WISH TO PURCHASE A COPY OF THE ILLEGAL-FILE.
 I WOULD LIKE IT TO BE PROVIDED TO MY REPRESENTATIVE UNDER THE LAW AS
 STATED ABOVE."
 
    FINANCE MANAGER MICHAEL REPLIED TO MCGURRAN BY LETTER DATED DECEMBER
 13, 1979.  THE FIRST SENTENCE OF THE FORM LETTER STATED THAT THE
 INFORMATION WAS BEING "FURNISHED IN RESPONSE TO YOUR RECENT REQUEST
 UNDER THE PRIVACY ACT." THE LETTER ALSO INDICATED THAT THE COPIES
 REQUESTED WOULD ONLY BE RELEASED UPON PAYMENT OF A CHARGE OF $9.45.  ON
 DECEMBER 15, 1979 THE UNION'S TREASURER SUBMITTED $9.45 TO RESPONDENT
 AND, AT THE REQUEST OF THE UNION, THE RECEIPT INDICATED THE PAYMENT WAS
 "FOR COPIES OF GRIEVANCE FILED UNDER PL-454, SECTION 7114." THEREUPON,
 COPIES OF THE REQUESTED DOCUMENTS, CONSISTING OF 189 SEPARATE PAGES,
 WERE SUPPLIED TO THE UNION.
 
    IN JANUARY 1980 THE COLLIER GRIEVANCE WAS RESOLVED.
 
    THE GENERAL COUNSEL CONTENDS THAT UNDER EXISTING FEDERAL SECTOR LAW
 AND UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 7114(B)(4) OF THE STATUTE RESPONDENT
 WAS OBLIGATED TO PROVIDE THE INFORMATION REQUESTED FREE OF CHARGE AND,
 IN ANY EVENT, CHARGING THE UNION FOR THE COLLIER DOCUMENTS CONSTITUTED A
 UNILATERAL CHANGE FROM PAST PRACTICE.
 
    RESPONDENT TAKES THE POSITION THAT:  THE FLRA IS WITHOUT JURISDICTION
 TO CONSIDER THIS MATTER SINCE THE CASE INVOLVES APPLICATION OF THE
 PRIVACY ACT;  UNDER THE TERMS OF THE NEGOTIATED AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE
 PARTIES THE UNION WAS REQUIRED TO PAY FOR COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS SOUGHT
 HEREIN;  SECTION 7114(B)(4) OF THE STATUTE DOES NOT REQUIRE THE
 RESPONDENT TO PROVIDE THE UNION COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS IN ISSUE WITHOUT
 CHARGE;  AND THE PREPONDERANCE OF THE EVIDENCE DOES NOT DISCLOSE THE
 EXISTENCE OF A PAST PRACTICE OF PROVIDING THE UNION COPIES OF DOCUMENTS
 WITHOUT CHARGE.
 
    IT HAS BEEN LONG ESTABLISHED UNDER EXECUTIVE ORDER 11491, AS AMENDED
 (THE EXECUTIVE ORDER), THE PREDECESSOR TO THE STATUTE IN THE REGULATION
 OF LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS IN THE FEDERAL SECTOR, THAT A UNION IS
 ENTITLED TO ACCESS TO INFORMATION NECESSARY AND RELEVANT TO THE
 EFFECTIVE PROCESSING OF A GRIEVANCE.  /12/ THAT RIGHT EMANATED FROM
 SECTION 10(E) OF THE EXECUTIVE ORDER UNDER WHICH A LABOR ORGANIZATION
 WAS GIVEN THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR REPRESENTING THE INTERESTS OF ALL
 EMPLOYEES IN THE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING UNIT.  /13/ IN NUMEROUS CASES
 UNDER THE EXECUTIVE ORDER EMPLOYERS WERE REQUIRED TO MAKE INFORMATION
 AVAILABLE TO THE EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVES IN CIRCUMSTANCES SIMILAR TO
 THAT HEREIN.  /14/ SUCH DATA WAS FOUND TO BE NECESSARY AND RELEVANT TO
 THE UNION FULFILLING ITS LEGITIMATE REPRESENTATIVE ROLE.  /15/
 
    THE LANGUAGE OF SECTION 7114(A)(1) OF THE STATUTE IS VIRTUALLY
 IDENTICAL TO SECTION 10(E) OF THE EXECUTIVE ORDER.  /16/ THEREFORE, IT
 IS REASONABLE TO ASSUME THAT RIGHTS WHICH A UNION POSSESSED UNDER
 SECTION 10(E) OF THE EXECUTIVE ORDER WERE RETAINED UNDER SECTION
 7114(A)(1) OF THE STATUTE.  FURTHER, SECTION 7135 OF THE STATUTE
 PROVIDES THAT "POLICIES, REGULATIONS, AND PROCEDURES ESTABLISHED UNDER
 AND DECISIONS ISSUED UNDER . . . (THE EXECUTIVE ORDER) . . . SHALL
 REMAIN IN FULL FORCE AND EFFECT UNTIL REVISED OR REVOKED BY THE
 PRESIDENT, OR UNLESS SUPERSEDED BY SPECIFIC PROVISIONS OF (THE STATUTE)
 OR BY REGULATIONS OR DECISIONS ISSUED PURSUANT TO (THE STATUTE)."
 ACCORDINGLY, SINCE IN MY VIEW THE DATA IN COLLIER'S FILE MEETS THE
 NECESSARY AND RELEVANT CRITERIA ESTABLISHED UNDER THE ORDER, I CONCLUDE
 THAT UNDER SECTION 7114(A)(1) OF THE STATUTE THE UNION WAS ENTITLED TO
 ACCESS TO THE DOCUMENTS CONTAINED IN THE FILE.  /17/
 
    AS TO RESPONDENT'S JURISDICTION ARGUMENT, I REJECT THE CONTENTION
 THAT THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY IS WITHOUT JURISDICTION TO
 CONSIDER THIS MATTER SINCE PRIVACY ACT CONSIDERATIONS MAY ALSO BE
 PRESENT.  THE DEMAND FOR DOCUMENTS IN THIS CASE WAS CLEARLY MADE UNDER
 THE STATUTE AND CLAIMS SIMILAR TO THOSE RESPONDENT MAKES HEREIN HAVE
 BEEN PREVIOUSLY REJECTED UNDER THE EXECUTIVE ORDER AND THERE IS NOTHING
 IN THE STATUTE WHICH SUGGESTS THAT A DIFFERENT APPROACH SHOULD NOW BE
 TAKEN.  /18/
 
    SIMILARLY, I REJECT RESPONDENT'S CONTENTION THAT BY THE PARTIES'
 NEGOTIATED AGREEMENT THE UNION HAD ACQUIESCED IN RESPONDENT'S CHARGING A
 FEE FOR COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS.  RESPONDENT POINTS TO THE FOLLOWING
 CONTRACTUAL LANGUAGE TO SUPPORT ITS POSITION:
 
    "IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF ALL MATTERS COVERED BY THE AGREEMENT,
 OFFICIALS AND EMPLOYEES ARE
 
    GOVERNED BY EXISTING OR FUTURE LAWS AND THE REGULATIONS OF
 APPROPRIATE AUTHORITIES, INCLUDING
 
    POLICIES SET FORTH IN THE FEDERAL PERSONNEL MANUAL;  BY PUBLISHED VA
 POLICIES AND REGULATIONS
 
    IN EXISTENCE AT THE TIME THE AGREEMENT WAS APPROVED;  AND, BY
 SUBSEQUENTLY PUBLISHED VA
 
    POLICIES AND REGULATIONS REQUIRED BY LAW OR BY THE REGULATIONS OF
 APPROPRIATE AUTHORITIES, OR
 
    AUTHORIZED BY THE TERM OF A CONTROLLING AGREEMENT AT A HIGHER AGENCY
 LEVEL."
 
    RESPONDENT ARGUES THAT SINCE ITS REGULATIONS REQUIRE CHARGING A FEE
 FOR THE PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS UNDER FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT (FOIA)
 GUIDELINES, 5 U.S.C.  552(A), THEN, BY THE ABOVE CONTRACTUAL LANGUAGE
 THE UNION BOUND ITSELF TO FOIA PROCEDURES.  THUS, ESSENTIALLY RESPONDENT
 URGES THAT THE UNION HAS WAIVED ANY STATUTORY RIGHT TO INFORMATION AND
 COMMITTED ITSELF TO FOIA PROCEDURES TO OBTAIN INFORMATION FROM
 RESPONDENT.
 
    THE ARGUMENT IS UNPERSUASIVE.  IT IS WELL SETTLED THAT A WAIVER OF A
 RIGHT GRANTED BY THE EXECUTIVE ORDER OR THE STATUTE WILL NOT BE LIGHTLY
 INFERRED AND MUST BE CLEAR AND UNMISTAKABLE.  /19/ IN MY OPINION THE
 CONTRACTUAL LANGUAGE AND FACTS HEREIN FALL FAR SHORT OF CONSTITUTING
 CLEAR AND UNMISTAKABLE CONDUCT SUFFICIENT TO SUPPORT A WAIVER AND
 OBLIGATE THE UNION TO OBTAIN ONLY THROUGH FOIA PROCEDURES DOCUMENTS TO
 WHICH IT WAS ENTITLED TO RECEIVE UNDER THE STATUTE.
 
    THE QUESTION REMAINS WHETHER THE UNION WAS ENTITLED UNDER THE STATUTE
 TO RECEIVE THE DOCUMENTS FREE OF CHARGE.  /20/ AT THE HEARING COUNSEL
 FOR THE GENERAL COUNSEL ATTEMPTED TO ESTABLISH THAT A PAST PRACTICE
 EXISTED WHEREBY RESPONDENT PROVIDED THE UNION COPIES OF DOCUMENTS FREE
 OF CHARGE WHEN THE NUMBER OF COPIES INVOLVED WAS SUBSTANTIAL.  UNION
 STEWARD MCGURRAN TESTIFIED THAT, WHILE IN THE PAST THE UNION WAS
 SOMETIMES CHARGED WHEN REQUESTING COPIES OF DOCUMENTS, ON THREE
 OCCASIONS WHEN LARGE NUMBERS OF COPIES WERE SOUGHT RESPONDENT SUPPLIED
 THE COPIES WITHOUT CHARGE.  HOWEVER, RESPONDENT'S WITNESSES CREDIBLY
 TESTIFIED THAT WHETHER THE UNION WAS CHARGED FOR COPIES OF DOCUMENTS WAS
 NOT DETERMINED BY THE NUMBER OF DOCUMENTS SOUGHT BUT, RATHER, BY
 APPLICATION OF ITS INTERNAL FOIA STANDARDS TO THE SPECIFIC REQUEST UNDER
 CONSIDERATION.  THUS, WHILE THE UNION, AND OTHERS, WERE CUSTOMARILY
 CHARGED FOR COPIES OF DOCUMENTS, EXCEPTIONS WERE REGULARLY MADE IN THIS
 PRACTICE UPON A DETERMINATION BEING MADE BY RESPONDENT THAT IT WOULD BE
 IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST TO PROVIDE FREE COPIES, OR IT WAS A NORMAL
 PRACTICE EXPECTED OF THE AGENCY, OR THE DOCUMENTS WERE PURELY
 INFORMATIONAL IN NATURE, OR IT WAS IN THE BEST INTEREST OF RESPONDENT TO
 PROVIDE THE COPIES WITHOUT CHARGE.  RESPONDENT'S EXPLANATION WAS NOT
 CHALLENGED.
 
    IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES HEREIN I FIND AND CONCLUDE THAT RESPONDENT'S
 EXPLANATION TO BE REASONABLE AND THE RECORD EVIDENCE INSUFFICIENT TO
 ESTABLISH A PAST PRACTICE OF RESPONDENT SUPPLYING THE UNION COPIES OF
 DOCUMENTS FREE OF CHARGE.  /21/
 
    COUNSEL FOR THE GENERAL COUNSEL AVERS THAT THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION
 7114(B)(4) OF THE STATUTE REQUIRE RESPONDENT TO SUPPLY COPIES OF THE
 REQUESTED DOCUMENTS TO THE UNION FREE OF CHARGE.  /22/ ASSUMING ARGUENDO
 THAT SECTION 7114(B)(4) IS APPLICABLE TO SITUATIONS SUCH AS HEREIN, I
 FIND THE SPECIFIC LANGUAGE OF SECTION 7114(B)(4) FAILS TO SUPPORT
 COUNSEL FOR THE GENERAL COUNSEL'S POSITION.  SECTION 7114(B)(4) MERELY
 REQUIRES THAT AN AGENCY "FURNISH" DATA AND IS SILENT AS TO THE
 CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH THE INFORMATION IS TO BE FURNISHED, INCLUDING
 WHETHER A CHARGE MAY BE EXACTED FOR THE SERVICE PROVIDED.  THE
 LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OF THE STATUTE REGARDING THIS SECTION DOES NOT
 ADDRESS THE MATTER OF A CHARGE FOR DATA.  NO COUNTERPART TO THIS SECTION
 EXISTED IN THE EXECUTIVE ORDER AND WHILE THE QUESTION OF A UNION'S RIGHT
 FOR INFORMATION FREQUENTLY AROSE, THE QUESTION OF REQUIRING A FEE FOR
 THE SERVICE OF PROVIDING SUCH INFORMATION DOES NOT APPEAR TO HAVE BEEN
 PUT IN ISSUE OR RESOLVED UNDER THE ORDER.  HOWEVER, THIS QUESTION HAS
 BEEN THE SUBJECT OF NUMEROUS CASES BROUGHT UNDER THE NATIONAL LABOR
 RELATIONS ACT.  WHILE DECISIONS OF THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS BOARD
 (NLRB OR THE BOARD) ARE NOT CONTROLLING AS TO SIMILAR MATTERS ARISING
 UNDER THE STATUTE, IT IS FREQUENTLY FRUITFUL TO EXPLORE NLRB TREATMENT
 OF THESE ISSUES.
 
    A TOUCHSTONE IN NLRB DECISIONS DEALING WITH THE OBLIGATION OF AN
 EMPLOYER TO FURNISH "NECESSARY AND RELEVANT" INFORMATION TO AN EXCLUSIVE
 REPRESENTATIVE IS THE CINCINNATI STEEL CASTINGS COMPANY, 86 NLRB
 592(1949).  IN THAT CASE THE BOARD HELD THAT AN EMPLOYER WAS NOT
 OBLIGATED TO FURNISH SUCH INFORMATION IN THE EXACT FORM REQUESTED BY THE
 REPRESENTATIVE BUT IT WAS SUFFICIENT IF THE INFORMATION WAS MADE
 AVAILABLE IN A MANNER NOT SO BURDENSOME OR TIME CONSUMING AS TO IMPEDE
 THE BARGAINING PROCESS.  IN ANOTHER CASE, LASKO METAL PRODUCTS, INC.,
 148 NLRB 976(1963), THE BOARD HELD THAT "(G)OOD FAITH BARGAINING
 REQUIRES ONLY THAT SUCH INFORMATION BE MADE AVAILABLE AT REASONABLE TIME
 AND IN A REASONABLE PLACE AND WITH AN OPPORTUNITY FOR THE UNION TO MAKE
 A COPY OF THE INFORMATION IF IT SO DESIRES."
 
    FREQUENTLY THE BOARD CASES TREATING THIS SUBJECT INVOLVED NUMEROUS
 DOCUMENTS OR SUBSTANTIAL COSTS.  IN THOSE CASES, WHERE COPIES OF
 DOCUMENTS WERE FURNISHED TO THE REPRESENTATIVE FOR ITS CONVENIENCE, THE
 BOARD CONCLUDED THAT AN EMPLOYER WAS NOT OBLIGATED TO BEAR THE BURDEN OF
 THE COST INVOLVED IN DUPLICATING THE MATERIAL.  UNITED AIRCRAFT CORP. ET
 AL., 192 NLRB 382 AT 389, 390(1971), AFF'D IN RELEVANT PART, 534 F.2D
 422 (2D CIR. 1975);  FOOD EMPLOYER COUNCIL, INC., 197 NLRB 651(1972);
 AND PACIFIC TELEPHONE AND TELEGRAPH COMPANY, 246 NLRB NO.  53(1979).
 FURTHER, THE BOARD HELD IN ONE CASE WHERE THE VOLUME OF DOCUMENTS IN
 QUESTION WAS SLIGHT THAT THE EMPLOYER WAS STILL NOT OBLIGATED TO PROVIDE
 COPIES BUT SIMPLY MAKE AVAILABLE THE DOCUMENTS TO THE UNION FOR
 INSPECTION.  ABERCROMBIE & FITCH CO., 206 NLRB 464(1973).  ACCORDINGLY,
 IT WOULD APPEAR THAT UNDER BOARD LAW, REGARDLESS OF THE VOLUME OF WORK,
 SUM OF MONEY, OR TIME INVOLVED IN DUPLICATING THE MATERIAL, ABSENT SOME
 EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH AN EMPLOYER IS NOT OBLIGATED TO FURNISH, FREE OF
 COST, COPIES OF "NECESSARY AND RELEVANT" DOCUMENTS TO A REPRESENTATIVE.
 
    IN THE CASE HEREIN THE UNION SOUGHT AND WAS GIVEN ACCESS TO COLLIER'S
 FILE WHICH CONSISTED OF APPROXIMATELY 190 PAGES.  THERE IS NO EVIDENCE
 TO INDICATE THAT THE UNION WAS PREVENTED FROM TAKING NOTES OR IN ANY WAY
 OBSTRUCTED OR LIMITED IN REVIEWING COLLIER'S FILE AT THE FACILITY.
 HOWEVER, THE UNION WISHED TO OBTAIN COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS FOR ITS OWN
 CONVENIENCE IN REVIEWING THE CONTENTS OF THE FILE.  RESPONDENT WAS
 WILLING TO PROVIDE THE UNION WITH COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS BUT INSISTED
 UPON A FEE OF FIVE CENTS A PAGE.  THERE IS NO CONTENTION THAT THE FEE
 CHARGED WAS UNREASONABLE NOR WAS THERE A SHOWING THAT THE FEE WAS
 DISCRIMINATORILY LEVIED AGAINST THE UNION.  FURTHER, THE EVIDENCE IS
 INSUFFICIENT TO SHOW THE EXISTENCE OF A PAST PRACTICE OF NOT CHARGING
 THE UNION FOR COPIES OF SUCH DOCUMENTS AND THERE IS NO OTHER ALLEGATION
 OR EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH ON THE PART OF RESPONDENT IN THIS MATTER.
 ACCORDINGLY, IN ALL THE CIRCUMSTANCES AND AS I AM UNAWARE OF ANY
 PERSUASIVE ARGUMENT WHICH WOULD SUPPORT THE EXISTENCE OF AN OBLIGATION
 UNDER THE STATUTE, I CONCLUDE THAT UNDER THE STATUTE RESPONDENT WAS NOT
 OBLIGATED TO PROVIDE THE UNION COPIES OF THE DOCUMENTS IN QUESTION
 WITHOUT CHARGE.
 
    BASED UPON THE FOREGOING FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS I RECOMMEND THE
 AUTHORITY ISSUE AN ORDER DISMISSING THE COMPLAINT IN ITS ENTIRETY.
 
                         SALVATORE J. ARRIGO
                         ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGE
 
    DATED:  JANUARY 23, 1981
    WASHINGTON, D.C.
 
 
 
 
 
 --------------- FOOTNOTES$ ---------------
 
 
    /1/ IN ITS OPPOSITION, THE RESPONDENT REQUESTS THAT THE GENERAL
 COUNSEL'S TIMELY FILED BRIEF IN SUPPORT OF EXCEPTIONS "SHOULD NOT BE
 ENTERTAINED BY THE AUTHORITY" BECAUSE "NO EXCEPTIONS HAVE BEEN FILED IN
 THIS MATTER." HOWEVER, THE RECORD INDICATES THAT THE GENERAL COUNSEL DID
 FILE SEPARATE EXCEPTIONS PURSUANT TO SECTION 2423.26(C) OF THE
 AUTHORITY'S RULES AND REGULATIONS IN ADDITION TO THE BRIEF IN SUPPORT
 THEREOF.  WHILE IT APPEARS FROM THE RESPONDENT'S CONTENTION THAT SUCH
 EXCEPTIONS INADVERTENTLY WERE NOT SERVED UPON THE RESPONDENT, THE
 AUTHORITY FINDS THAT THE SUPPORTING BRIEF FULLY IDENTIFIES AND
 DELINEATES THE REASONS FOR THE GENERAL COUNSEL'S EXCEPTIONS.
 ACCORDINGLY, IN THE ABSENCE OF A SHOWING OR EVEN AN ASSERTION THAT THE
 RESPONDENT WAS PREJUDICED IN ANY MANNER HEREIN, THE AUTHORITY CONCLUDES
 THAT THE GENERAL COUNSEL'S EXCEPTIONS ARE PROPERLY BEFORE THE AUTHORITY
 FOR CONSIDERATION.
 
    /2/ SEC. 7116.  UNFAIR LABOR PRACTICES
 
    (A) FOR THE PURPOSE OF THIS CHAPTER, IT SHALL BE AN UNFAIR LABOR
 PRACTICE FOR AN AGENCY --
 
    (1) TO INTERFERE WITH, RESTRAIN, OR COERCE ANY EMPLOYEE IN THE
 EXERCISE BY THE EMPLOYEE OF
 
    ANY RIGHT UNDER THIS CHAPTER;
 
   *          *          *          *
 
 
    (5) TO REFUSE TO CONSULT OR NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH WITH A LABOR
 ORGANIZATION AS REQUIRED
 
    BY THIS CHAPTER;
 
   *          *          *          *
 
 
    (8) TO OTHERWISE FAIL OR REFUSE TO COMPLY WITH ANY PROVISION OF THIS
 CHAPTER.
 
    /3/ SECTION 7114(A)(1) PROVIDES:
 
    SEC. 7114.  REPRESENTATION RIGHTS AND DUTIES
 
    (A)(1) A LABOR ORGANIZATION WHICH HAS BEEN ACCORDED EXCLUSIVE
 RECOGNITION IS THE EXCLUSIVE
 
    REPRESENTATIVE OF THE EMPLOYEES IN THE UNIT IT REPRESENTS AND IS
 ENTITLED TO ACT FOR, AND
 
    NEGOTIATE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENTS COVERING, ALL EMPLOYEES IN
 THE UNIT.  AN EXCLUSIVE
 
    REPRESENTATIVE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR REPRESENTING THE INTERESTS OF ALL
 EMPLOYEES IN THE UNIT IT
 
    REPRESENTS WITHOUT DISCRIMINATION AND WITHOUT REGARD TO LABOR
 ORGANIZATION MEMBERSHIP.
 
    /4/ SECTION 7114(B)(4) PROVIDES:
 
    (B) THE DUTY OF AN AGENCY AND AN EXCLUSIVE REPRESENTATIVE TO
 NEGOTIATE IN GOOD FAITH UNDER
 
    SUBSECTION (A) OF THIS SECTION SHALL INCLUDE THE OBLIGATION --
 
   *          *          *          *
 
 
    (4) IN THE CASE OF AN AGENCY, TO FURNISH TO THE EXCLUSIVE
 REPRESENTATIVE INVOLVED, OR ITS
 
    AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE, UPON REQUEST AND, TO THE EXTENT NOT
 PROHIBITED BY LAW, DATA--
 
    (A) WHICH IS NORMALLY MAINTAINED BY THE AGENCY IN THE REGULAR COURSE
 OF BUSINESS;
 
    (B) WHICH IS REASONABLY AVAILABLE AND NECESSARY FOR FULL AND PROPER
 DISCUSSION,
 
    UNDERSTANDING, AND NEGOTIATION OF SUBJECTS WITHIN THE SCOPE OF
 COLLECTIVE BARGAINING;  AND
 
    (C) WHICH DOES NOT CONSTITUTE GUIDANCE, ADVICE, COUNSEL, OR TRAINING
 PROVIDED FOR
 
    MANAGEMENT OFFICIALS OR SUPERVISORS, RELATING TO COLLECTIVE
 BARGAINING(.)
 
    /5/ THERE IS NO CONTENTION THAT THE DATA REQUESTED HEREIN IS
 "PROHIBITED BY LAW" FROM BEING FURNISHED (SEE, E.G., BUREAU OF ALCOHOL,
 TOBACCO AND FIREARMS, NATIONAL OFFICE AND WESTERN REGION, SAN FRANCISCO,
 CALIFORNIA, 8 FLRA NO. 108(1982)) OR THAT THE DATA REQUESTED DOES NOT
 OTHERWISE MEET THE CRITERIA OF SECTION 7114(B)(4).
 
    /6/ AS THE U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT
 RECENTLY NOTED IN AFFIRMING THE AUTHORITY'S RELIANCE UPON THE PLAIN
 MEANING OF THE WORD "DIRECT" IN CONSTRUING A STATUTORY PHRASE IN THE
 ABSENCE OF PERTINENT LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OR CONTRADICTORY STATUTORY
 LANGUAGE, NATIONAL TREASURY EMPLOYEES UNION V. FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS
 AUTHORITY, NO. 80-1895 (D.C. CIR. OCT. 12, 1982), AT N. 80:
 
    IT GOES ALMOST WITHOUT SAYING THAT THIS IS AN ESTABLISHED AND
 SATISFACTORY TECHNIQUE OF
 
    STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION.  (CITATIONS OMITTED.)
 
    SEE ALSO NATIONAL TREASURY EMPLOYEES UNION AND U.S. CUSTOMS SERVICE,
 REGION VIII, SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, 2 FLRA 254(1979).
 
    /7/ SEE, E.G., WEBSTER'S NEW WORLD DICTIONARY OF THE AMERICAN
 LANGUAGE (1972) WHICH DEFINES "FURNISH" IN PERTINENT PART AS FOLLOWS:
 
    (T)O SUPPLY, PROVIDE, OR EQUIP WITH WHATEVER IS NECESSARY OR USEFUL;
 . . . TO
 
    SUPPLY;