15:0397(82)AR - Army Electronics Research and Development Command, Fort Monmouth, NJ and NFFE -- 1984 FLRAdec AR
[ v15 p397 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
15 FLRA No. 82 U.S. ARMY ELECTRONICS RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMAND, FORT MONMOUTH, NEW JERSEY Activity and NATIONAL FEDERATION OF FEDERAL EMPLOYEES Union Case No. O-AR-763 ORDER DISMISSING EXCEPTIONS This case is before the Authority on exceptions to the award of Arbitrator Peter Florey filed by the Union pursuant to section 7122(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute and section 2425.1 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. For the reasons stated below, it has been determined that the exceptions must be dismissed as untimely filed. The Arbitrator's award is dated February 28, 1984, and appears to have been served on the parties by mail on the same day. Subsequently, the Union requested that the Arbitrator reconsider his denial of the Union's request for attorney fees and the Agency requested that the Arbitrator clarify other aspects of the award. The Arbitrator responded by letter of March 30, 1984, essentially advising the parties that his award was final and that he did not deem it necessary to either reconsider the denial of attorney fees or to otherwise clarify the award. The Union filed the instant exceptions with the Authority on April 30, 1984. Under section 7122(b) of the Statute, as amended, /1/ and section 2425.1 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations, as amended, /2/ which amendments are applicable to exceptions pending or filed with the Authority on or after March 2, 1984, and under sections 2429.21 and 2429.22 of the Rules and Regulations, which are also applicable to computation of the time limit here involved, any exceptions to the Arbitrator's award in this case had to be filed with the Authority no later than the close of business on April 2, 1984. Thus, it immediately and clearly appears that the exceptions filed by the Union on April 30, 1984, are untimely. The Union, however, asserts that the award was not final until the Arbitrator denied the Union's request for reconsideration on March 30, 1984. The Authority has held that a post-award request for clarification and the mere possibility of modification of the award by the Arbitrator does not deprive the award of finality and render the award interlocutory. /3/ Similarly, the post-award requests of the parties in this case did not render the Arbitrator's award interlocutory. The Authority has also held in the circumstances of a case in which the Arbitrator, in response to a clarification request, modified the award in such a way as to give rise to alleged deficiencies, that the filing period began with the modification. /4/ In this case, however, the Arbitrator did not modify his award. Rather, as indicated above, the Arbitrator simply advised the parties that his award of February 28, 1984, was final and denied the Union's request for reconsideration and the Agency's request for clarification. Thus, the time limits for filing exceptions to the award in this case began on the date the award was served on the parties, i.e., February 28, 1984, and expired on April 2, 1984. Therefore, the exceptions filed by the Union on April 30, 1984, are untimely. Accordingly, the Union's exceptions are hereby dismissed. For the Authority. Issued, Washington, D.C., July 27, 1984 Jan K. Bohren Executive Director/Administrator --------------- FOOTNOTES$ --------------- /1/ Section 7122(b) of the Statute was amended by the Civil Service Miscellaneous Amendments Act of 1983 (Pub. L. No. 98-224, Sec. 4, 98 Stat. 47, 48 (1984)) to provide that the 30-day period for filing exceptions to an arbitrator's award begins on the date the award is served on the filing party. /2/ 49 Fed.Reg. 22623 (1984). /3/ Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Federal Employees Metal Trades Council, AFL-CIO, 5 FLRA No. 28 (1984); American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 1612 and U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Prisons, U.S. Medical Center for Federal Prisoners, Springfield, Missouri, 6 FLRA 5 (1981). /4/ United States Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, Eugene District Office and National Federation of Federal Employees, Local 1911, 6 FLRA 401, 403 n.2 (1981).