11:0334(68)CA - Bureau of Government Financial Operations HQ and NTEU -- 1983 FLRAdec CA



[ v11 p334 ]
11:0334(68)CA
The decision of the Authority follows:


 11 FLRA No. 68
 
 BUREAU OF GOVERNMENT FINANCIAL
 OPERATIONS HEADQUARTERS
 Respondent
 
 and
 
 NATIONAL TREASURY EMPLOYEES UNION
 Charging Party
 
                                            Case No. 3-CA-1807
 
                            DECISION AND ORDER
 
    The Administrative Law Judge issued the attached Decision in the
 above-entitled proceeding finding that the Respondent had engaged in the
 unfair labor practices alleged in the complaint, and recommending that
 it be ordered to cease and desist therefrom and take certain affirmative
 action.  Thereafter, the Respondent filed exceptions.
 
    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.  /1A/
 
                                   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 Bureau of Government Financial Operations
 Headquarters, Washington, D.C. shall:
 
    1.  Cease and desist from:
 
    (a) Instituting a reassignment of employees represented exclusively
 by the National Treasury Employees Union, without first notifying the
 exclusive representative and affording it an opportunity to bargain
 concerning the implementation of such reassignment and its impact on
 affected employees.
 
    (b) In any like or related manner interfering with, restraining, or
 coercing its employees in the exercise of their rights assured by the
 Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.
 
    2.  Take the following affirmative actions in order to effectuate the
 purposes and policies of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations
 Statute.
 
    (a) Give prior notification to the National Treasury Employees Union
 of any intended reassignment of employees, and, upon request, bargain
 with such representative concerning the implementation of such
 reassignment and its impact on affected employees.
 
    (b) Post at its facility at the Liberty Loan Building, Washington,
 D.C., 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, or his designee, and shall be posted
 for 60 consecutive days thereafter in conspicuous places, including all
 places where notices to employees are customarily posted.  Reasonable
 steps shall be taken to insure that the 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 III, 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., February 10, 1983
 
                                       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 institute any reassignment with respect to employees
 represented by the National Treasury Employees Union, without first
 notifying such representative and affording it the opportunity to
 bargain concerning the implementation of such reassignment and its
 impact on affected employees.
 
    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
 Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.
 
    WE WILL give prior notification to the National Treasury Employees ,
 Union of any intended reassignment and, upon request, bargain with such
 representative concerning the implementation of such reassignment and
 its impact on affected employees.
                                       (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 employees have any questions concerning this Notice or compliance
 with any of its provisions, they may communicate directly with the
 Regional Director, Region III, Federal Labor Relations Authority, whose
 address is:  1111 18th Street, Room 700, P.O. Box 33758, Washington,
 D.C. 20033-0758, and whose phone number is (202) 653-8507.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 -------------------- ALJ$ DECISION FOLLOWS --------------------
 
    Erick J. Genser, Esq.
          For the General Counsel
 
    Lynn Sylvester, Esq.
          For the Charging Party
 
    Arthur S. Rosenzweig
          For the Respondent
 
    Before:  ELI NASH, JR.
          Administrative Law Judge
 
                                 Decision
 
                           Statement of the Case
 
    Pursuant to a Complaint and Notice of Hearing issued on February 25,
 1981 by the Regional Director for the Federal Labor Relations Authority,
 Washington, D.C. Region, a hearing was held in this matter on April 21,
 1981 in Washington, D.C.
 
    The proceeding arose under the Federal Service Labor-Management
 Relations Statute, 92 Stat. 1191, 5 U.S.C 7101 et seq. (herein called
 the Statute).  It is based upon a charge filed on December 29, 1980 by
 the National Treasury Employees Union (herein called the Union) against
 Bureau of Government Financial Operations Headquarters (herein called
 Respondent).
 
    The Complaint in this matter alleges that Respondent, on or about
 December 3, 1980, implemented a reassignment of employees without
 providing the Union adequate notice and opportunity to negotiate over
 the impact and implementation of those assignments in violation of
 section 7116(a)(1) and (5) of the Statute.
 
    Respondent filed an Answer on March 13, 1981 denying the commission
 of any unfair labor practices.
 
    All parties were represented at the hearing.  Each was afforded full
 opportunity to be heard, to adduce evidence, and to examine and
 cross-examine witnesses and to argue orally.  The Respondent and
 Charging Party thereafter filed timely briefs which have been duly
 considered.
 
    Upon the entire record in this case, from my observation of the
 witnesses and their demeanor, and from all the testimony and evidence
 adduced at the hearing, I make the following findings and conclusions.
 
                             Findings of Fact
 
    1.  At all times material herein the Union has been the exclusive
 bargaining representative of the employees involved in this matter.
 
    2.  At all times material herein Respondent and the Union were
 parties to a collective bargaining agreement containing a section
 regarding reassignment of employees.  Article XVI, Section 2 of that
 Agreement reads as follows:
 
          Section 2
 
          A. When the EMPLOYER determines that an involuntary
       reassignment of an employee is necessary due to a staffing
       imbalance (See Section 2.B. of this Article) and that the
       involuntary reassignment involves a shift to another building for
       an employee, the EMPLOYER shall use the following procedures;
 
          1.  Of the excess positions to be shifted by such reassignment,
       the EMPLOYER shall identify the three (3) qualified employees with
       the least length of service with the EMPLOYER.
 
          2.  The EMPLOYER will consider reassigning such employee(s) by
       least length of service with the EMPLOYER.  If the EMPLOYER
       decides not to reassign one (1) of the three (3) least senior
       employees, it may reassign any employee it determines is qualified
       for the position.
 
          3.  Upon written request, the EMPLOYER will provide the UNION
       with a written explanation of the reason(s) why it did not
       reassign one (1) of the three (3) least senior employees.
 
          B.  It is clearly understood that the provisions of this
       section only pertain to a staffing imbalance in connection with a
       building change, and do not preclude or limit the EMPLOYER from
       making any reassignment due do its assessments of its needs and
       employee abilities and qualifications.  Further, the parties agree
       that this Section does not cover situations where a Division,
       Staff or component thereof is being phased-out or a
       reduction-in-force is in effect.  It is strictly limited to a
       staffing imbalance situation, where the EMPLOYER determines that
       excess employees in a Division, Staff or component thereof must be
       involuntarily reassigned to another Division, Staff or component
       thereof in another building where there is a shortage of that type
       of employee, and where the EMPLOYER determined that the sending
       Division, Staff or component thereof shall continue its operations
       indefinitely.
 
    3.  Sometime around September 8, 1980 the Division of Check Claims,
 one of Respondent's components was reorganized.  Following that
 reorganization it became apparent to Respondent that a staffing
 imbalance was causing a significant work backlog in one area in the
 Liberty Loan Building.  Respondent's managers, therefore, sought
 permission to reassign a number of employees between the claims
 adjudication branches and adjudication control branch to reduce the
 aforementioned backlog, but were prevented from carrying out the
 reassignments until new hiring ceiling for the affected organizational
 units, the adjudication claims branches and the adjudication control
 branch were alloted.  Around the fourth week in November 1980, the
 managers were notified of the controlling ceilings and given authority
 to proceed with the reassignments.  All employees involved in the
 proposed transfer were clerical.
 
    4.  The record shows that the adjudication claims branches contained
 claims examiners and claim clerks who process cases which are
 provisionally in order for collection.  Claims adjudication branch
 employees investigate and decide whether a claim for the proceeds of
 government checks are proper and make the decision whether to settle or
 deny a claim or to conduct a further investigation.  The adjudication
 control branch was composed of the files for the units and employees
 there put the cases together for the claims adjudication branches.
 
    5.  As previously noted, the employees transferred were all clerical.
  Acting as claims clerks in the adjudication branches the clerical
 employees aided the claims examiners in making sure that all information
 was in the case file, obtained further information needed to complete
 the cases, were required to have some familiarity with the nature of
 claims adjudication and some understanding of how cases were developed,
 processed and adjudicated.  These positions also required some typing.
 The adjudication control branch employees were concerned primarily with
 batching cases.  Their work involved filing, alphabetizing or numbering
 cases and putting rubber bands around cases.
 
    6.  Shop Steward Steven Osheroff, the official union contact point
 for labor-management matters in the claims adjudication and adjudication
 control branches testified that on November 25, 1980, he was called by
 the Acting Division Assistant Director, Mr. Robert Covington and
 informed that nine (9) employees were to be transferred.  According to
 Osheroff, he asked Mr. Covington for an impact statement.  Mr. Covington
 responded that there "wasn't any impact, they were just going to
 transfer the employees." Osheroff states that he suggested a change of
 procedures meant "he was implementing something, they had an impact on
 employees so therefore there was an impact and he should get me an
 impact statement." Mr. Covington told Osheroff that, "he would get back
 to me."
 
    7.  The following day, November 26, 1980 Osheroff received a
 memorandum from Covington stating:
 
          This memorandum is to inform you that effective December 1,
       1980, nine of the employees currently filing Clerk (Typing)
       GS-303-02/03 positions in the three Claims Adjudication Branches
       are being reassigned to the Adjudication Control Branch.
 
          The reassignments are being made due to budgeting constraints
       in filling positions in a critical area of the Division's work
       processes.
 
          The reassignments will not affect the grades of the employees
       nor will their position descriptions be changed.
 
 Osheroff after reviewing the contractual provision relating to
 realignments called Covington and asked "why he wasn't complying with
 the contract." Covington again told Osheroff that he would get back to
 him.  Thereupon, Osheroff wrote Covington a note asking to be provided a
 "written explanation of why you did not reassign the employees with the
 lease length of service . . . " After delivering the note to Covington,
 Osheroff received a telephone call from Covington, who told him that,
 "his understanding was he wasn't in violation of the contract."
 
    8.  On November 26, 1980, after conferring with the Union's
 president, Osheroff wrote Covington another letter in which he invoked
 the right to negotiate, offered a counter proposal that the processes
 for reassignment contained in Article XVI, Section 2 of the collective
 bargaining agreement be used and requested certain information used by
 Respondent in determining the individuals preselected.
 
    9.  On November 28, 1980, Covington responded, by memorandum which
 stated, in pertinent part:
 
          Your request that we use length of service as a basis for
       reassignment and the NTEU be furnished all information used by
       management to select the individuals involved, is hereby denied.
       Article XVI Section 2.B of the Collective Bargaining Agreement
       clearly states that the provisions under the section pertain to a
       building change, which in no way relates to the situation
       described in my memorandum of November 25, 1980.
 
          As for NTEU's rights to negotiate the change in working
       conditions, I am willing to discuss any of your concerns relative
       to implementation and impact, but the decision to reassign or the
       parties scheduled for reassignment will not be discussed.  For the
       purpose of allowing discussion on implementation or impact, I am
       postponing the reassignments until December 3, 1980.
 
 As the record disclosed, November 28, 1980 was a Friday following the
 Thanksgiving holiday for that year.  Osheroff, because he had taken
 annual leave on that day, as he always had done in the past, did not
 receive the memorandum until the next Monday morning, December 1, 1980.
 Subsequently, on that day, Osheroff contacted a Union Field
 Representative Lynn Sylvester and asked what could be done.  According
 to Osheroff, he informed Sylvester that the request for information had
 already been denied.  Sylvester told him that she would get back to him.
  However, she did not do so on that day.
 
    10.  The following day, December 2, 1980, Osheroff, in a conversation
 primarily related to another matter discussed the reassignments with
 Respondent's Labor Relations Specialist, Mr. Rosenzweig.  Rosenzweig,
 according to Osheroff, suggested that he meet with Mr. Covington, but
 Osheroff stated that Covington had already denied the Union's request
 for information, so what could the Union hope to get from such a
 meeting.  Rosenzweig reiterated that the Union should meet with
 Covington.
 
    11.  On December 3, 1980, Osheroff called Covington and was told by
 Covington that, "he didn't see there was much to meet around or much to
 discuss." Osheroff then called Field Representative Sylvester who
 suggested that Osheroff request that Covington put his position in
 writing Osheroff complied, writing Covington a December 3, 1980
 memorandum requesting that they meet "to clarify your position and to
 discuss the impact and implementation of this transfer." Pursuant to
 this request, it appears that the parties eventually met on December 8,
 1980.
 
    12.  According to Osheroff, the reassignment of the nine clerical
 employees affected not only clerical employees, but employees such as
 the claims examiners.  He further testified that during this period he
 was "able to do very little investigation," concerning the impact of the
 reassignment.  On rebuttal, Osheroff testified that the Union had been
 given fourteen days notice when other reassignments were effected.
 
    13.  Mr. Covington testified that during previous reassignments the
 Union had been given as little as "two days" notification before
 implementation.  Covington further testified that his understanding was
 "the selection procedures were taken into account when the contract was
 negotiated." He states that because Respondent did not know what the
 Union had in mind the November 28, 1980 memorandum was "an offer" and
 "if there were some other concerns involving implementation and impact,
 what we were trying to do there was accommodate those concerns."
 
    14.  According to Covington a situation of exigency existed.  In his
 view, the situation had become quite unsettling with rumors of the
 reassignment;  because of the personnel ceilings involved the work was
 not being moved or processed as expected;  they were not meeting the
 expected goals on the adjudication of executed claims;  and, employees
 were learning new and obsolete procedures, which if they were to be
 transferred, they did not need to know.  He, therefore, felt that since
 he had not heard from the Union between December 1 and 3, his obligation
 to negotiate concerning the reassigned employees had been concluded.
 
                        Discussion and Conclusions
 
    The only question involved in this matter is whether or not the Union
 received reasonable notice to allow it to engage in meaningful
 bargaining concerning the reassignment of employees from the
 adjudication claims branches to the adjudication control branch on or
 about December 3, 1980.  Respondent maintains that an overriding
 exigency dictated that the move be accomplished during early December
 1980, that the counterproposal submitted by the Union was already
 covered by the collective bargaining agreement, and it therefore had no
 obligation to bargain on the one counterproposal submitted by the Union
 on November 26, 1980.
 
    The record disclosed that existing ceilings had prevented Respondent
 from reassigning employees for almost two months and that an imbalance
 in branches existing during that entire period.  However, there is no
 record evidence to support a finding that an overriding exigency
 requiring immediate action existed.  The imbalance referred to by
 Respondent had existed for well over two months and Respondent had
 indeed made its decision /2/ that the moves would have to be made
 shortly after the September 1980 reorganization.  Furthermore, during
 the interim period, since Respondent was well aware that the
 reassignments were imminent, an opportunity to bargain existed.
 Respondent cannot now claim that when it received ceiling authorization
 it had to act with urgency.
 
    The General Counsel presented evidence on rebuttal that the Union had
 on occasion been given at least fourteen days prior to implementation of
 changes in working conditions to respond to proposed changes.
 Respondent, on the other hand, offered testimony that on occasion it had
 given as little as two days notice.  Neither of these times is
 controlling in the instant matter since it appears from the record that
 those reassignments were made under different conditions involving
 totally different circumstances, such as inter-building moves.  Clearly
 notices given in the past were variable, but the only issue here is
 whether the notice given for this reassignment allowed sufficient time
 for a meaningful bargaining relationship to develop.
 
    In this matter, Respondent notified the Union of proposed changes in
 working conditions which originally were scheduled to occur on December
 1, 1980 on November 25, 1980.  It is noteworthy that, November 25, 1980
 was a Tuesday, before a Thursday, Thanksgiving holiday of that year.
 Steward Osheroff testified that he had traditionally taken annual leave
 on the Friday after Thanksgiving, as do many government employees.  It
 is reasonable to assume that union representatives, employees and
 management personnel involved would also take such a long-weekend
 holiday and that notice given in this posture would not have afforded
 the Union three days, as Respondent suggests, but actually only one day,
 November 26.  In my view, the Union, in reality, received only one days
 notice between November 25, 1980 and December 1, 1980 to investigate and
 formulate its counterproposals.  I, therefore, find that the Union's
 hastily prepared counterproposal submitted on November 26, 1980, was
 formulated before there was a full opportunity to explore the impact of
 the reassignment and would not preclude it from submitting further
 proposals concerning implementation and impact, had the parties in fact
 engaged in negotiations over the matter.  It is further noted that, on
 November 25, the Union asked for an impact statement and for certain
 information regarding the reassignments, neither of which was ever
 supplied.  Furthermore, Osheroff states that he attempted to explain the
 full range of impact and implementation to Covington on November 25, but
 found no audience.  Without any information or an opportunity to
 investigate coupled with a statement from Respondent's representative
 that "there wasn't any impact", it can hardly be suggested that the
 Union had an opportunity to formulate any meaningful bargaining
 proposals particularly since at that time the changes were to be made on
 December 1.
 
    On November 28, Respondent granted a two day extension until December
 3 before implementing the reassignments.  Respondent suggests that the
 Union should have acted before the expiration of that extension.  The
 record shows that the Union did just that, for on December 3, it
 requested to meet with Mr. Covington "to discuss the impact and
 implementation", nonetheless no meeting was held until December 8, 1980,
 four days after the reassignments were effected.  Moreover, the November
 28 notice of extension was not received by the Union until December 1
 and any argument that it did not respond in a reasonable length of time
 to the extension must be rejected.
 
    Federal sector cases concerning notification and the parties'
 obligation to negotiate have established that:
 
          "the right to engage in a dialogue with respect to matters for
       which there is an obligation to meet and confer becomes meaningful
       only when agency management has afforded the exclusive
       representative reasonable notification and an ample opportunity to
       explore fully the matters involved prior to taking any action."
       /3/
 
 No such opportunity was offered to Osheroff.  Telephone calls between
 the two principal characters in which one is asking for negotiations and
 the other stating that there is nothing to bargain about cannot be
 characterized as bargaining.
 
    Contrary to Respondent's argument, I find that the Union was not
 given nine days notice, but only, five working days, at best, with one
 of those working days being over a traditional four day holiday period.
 Having found that the Union was allowed only five working days, at best,
 to formulate proposals, the question becomes whether or not this was a
 reasonable amount of time to allow it to investigate and formulate
 proposals and engage in meaningful bargaining concerning the
 reassignments.  Despite Respondent's argument to the contrary, it is my
 opinion, that five working days, where nine employees were to be
 reassigned was not reasonable notification to allow the Union in this
 instance to explore fully and to develop meaningful bargaining
 proposals.
 
    Respondent further contends that the Union had contractually waived
 its right to bargain concerning seniority as a part of the transfer and
 that this was the only counterproposal offered by the Union during the
 entire period between receipt of notice and implementation of the
 reassignments on December 4, 1980.  In my view, the one counterproposal
 prepared on a single days notice, which involved only seniority, does
 not waive the Union's right to bargain concerning other impacts of the
 reassignment.  In fact, the submission of this counterproposal indicates
 that the Union was concerned with the impact of this reassignment.  Nor
 would I find that this single counterproposal limited the scope of any
 further impact bargaining on the subject of seniority as Respondent's
 arguments seem to suggest.  Osheroff's testimony clearly indicates that
 the Union had concerns other than seniority, but that he was unable to
 impress Mr. Covington with that position on November 25.
 
    Respondent also maintains that it moved to implement the changes on
 December 3, only after it did not hear from the Union for two days.
 However, as previously noted Osheroff received the notice on December 1
 and requested a meeting on December 3, prior to the December 4
 implementation, but the parties did not meet until December 8.  In light
 of the Union's obvious interest in negotiating the change, it was not
 unreasonable for the Union to take the two additional days allowed to
 develop its counterproposals and contact management to schedule
 negotiations.  /4/ Since there was a request to negotiate on the
 implementation and impact and no showing of any overriding exigency
 which would have required it to act on the reassignments prior to
 discussing implementation and impact as requested by the Union on
 December 3 it appears that there is no reason why Respondent could not
 have delayed reassignment until after it had met with the Union.  In all
 the circumstances of the case, I find that no overriding exigency
 existed, that the five days notification afforded the Union prior to
 implementing the reassignments did not allow it ample opportunity to
 investigate and formulate meaningful counterproposals and that the
 parties were unable to explore fully the matter prior to implementation
 because the Union was not given reasonable notice of the implementation.
 
    Based on the foregoing, it is found that the Union was not afforded
 reasonable notice and an opportunity to develop proposals and meet with
 management to discuss those proposals in any meaningful fashion prior to
 the implementation of the reassignment and that Respondent's failure to
 give reasonable notice concerning the reassignments prevented full
 exploration of the matter before any action was taken and constituted a
 violation of section 7116(a)(1) and (5) of the Statute.  /5/
 
                                  Remedy
 
    In its brief, the Charging Party requested a status quo ante remedy
 in this matter.
 
    The imposition of such a remedy could possibly cause a potential
 disruption of Respondent's operation and create a hardship on the part
 of the branches concerned.  In such circumstances, while the Respondent
 clearly has an obligation to bargain concerning the implementation and
 impact of its decision to make the reassignments, it is my view that
 because of potential hardships and disruption a status quo ante remedy
 would be unwarranted.  See, San Antonio Air Logistics Center (AFLC)
 Kelly Air Force Base, Texas, 5 FLRA No. 22.  However, it is recommended
 that Respondent be ordered to bargain concerning the impact and
 implementation of the reassignment as it affected those employees
 represented by the Union.
 
    Having found that Respondent violation section 7116(a)(1) and (5) of
 the Statute, it is recommended that the following Order be adopted.
 
                                   ORDER
 
    Pursuant to section 7105(g)(3) of the Federal Service
 Labor-Management Relations Statute, and section 2400.2 of its
 Regulations, it is hereby ordered that the Bureau of Government
 Financial Operations Headquarters, Washington, D.C. shall:
 
          (a) Instituting a reassignment of employees represented
       exclusively by National Treasury Employees Union, without first
       notifying the exclusive representative and affording it an
       opportunity to meet and confer, to the extent consonant with law
       and regulation, concerning the implementation of such
       reassignments and its impact on affected employees.
 
          (b) In any like or related manner interfering with, restraining
       or coercing its employees in the exercise of their rights assured
       by the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.
 
    2.  Take the following affirmative actions in order to effectuate the
 purposes and policies of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations
 Statute:
 
          (a) Notify the National Treasury Employees Union, of any
       intended reassignment of employees, and, upon request consult and
       negotiate with such representative to the extent consonant with
       law and regulations, concerning the impact and implementation of
       such reassignment.
 
          (b) Post at its facility at the Liberty Loan Building,
       Washington, D.C., copies of the attached notice marked "Appendix",
       on forms to be furnished by the Federal Labor Relations Authority.
        Upon receipt of such form they shall be signed by the Director
       and they shall be posted for 60 consecutive days thereafter in
       conspicuous places, including all 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) Notify the Federal Labor Relations Authority in writing,
       within 30 days from the date of this Order, what steps have been
       taken to comply therewith.
 
                                       ELI NASH, JR.
                                       Administrative Law Judge
 
 Dated:  June 12, 1981
          Washington, D.C.
 
 
 
 
                                 APPENDIX
 
                          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 institute any reassignment with respect to employees
 represented by the National Treasury Employees Union, without first
 notifying such representative and affording it the opportunity to
 consult and negotiate, to the extent consonant with law and regulations,
 concerning the impact and implementation of such reassignment.
 
    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
 Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.
 
    WE WILL notify the National Treasury Employees Union, of any intended
 reassignment and, upon request, consult and negotiate, to the extent
 consonant with law and regulations, on the impact and implementation of
 such reassignment.
                                       (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 employees have any questions concerning this Notice or compliance
 with any of its provisions, they may communicate directly with the
 Regional Director, Region III, Federal Labor Relations Authority, whose
 address is:  1133 - 15th Street, N.W., Suite 300, Washington, D.C.
 20005, and whose phone number is (202) 653-8452.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 --------------- FOOTNOTES$ ---------------
 
 
    /1A/ The Respondent excepts to certain remarks and comments allegedly
 made by the Judge at the prehearing conference, contending they indicate
 that the Judge had already formed an irrevocable opinion before
 management was afforded its opportunity to present and argue its case.
 The purpose and policies of the Federal Service Labor-Management
 Relations Statute include encouraging parties to resolve disputes by
 fostering and affording an atmosphere conducive to the settlement of
 unfair labor practice allegations and preventing and avoiding needless
 litigation.  To this end, section 2423.19(j) of the Authority's Rules
 and Regulations authorizes the Judge to hold conferences for the
 settlement or simplification of issues.  In the Authority's view, to
 unduly restrict or eliminate a free exchange of views at a prehearing
 conference would inhibit the settlement of unfair labor practice
 allegations.  Upon review of the Respondent's exceptions and the overall
 record herein, the Authority specifically finds no merit to this
 exception.
 
 
    /1/ The name appears as amended at the hearing.
 
 
    /2/ Respondent's right to make the decision to reassign employees has
 not been ch