19:0132(12)CA - HHS Region II and Local 1760, AFGE -- 1985 FLRAdec CA



[ v19 p132 ]
19:0132(12)CA
The decision of the Authority follows:


 19 FLRA No. 12
 
 DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN
 SERVICES, REGION II
 Respondent
 
 and
 
 LOCAL 1760, AMERICAN FEDERATION
 OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO
 Charging Party
 
                                            Case No. 2-CA-20364
 
                            DECISION AND ORDER
 
    This matter is before the Authority pursuant to the Regional
 Director's "Order Transferring Case to the Federal Labor Relations
 Authority" in accordance with section 2429.1(a) of the Authority's Rules
 and Regulations.
 
    Upon consideration of the entire record, including the stipulation of
 facts, accompanying exhibits, and the parties' contentions, the
 Authority finds:
 
    The complaint alleges, in essence, that the Department of Health and
 Human Services, Region II (the Respondent) violated section 7116(a)(1),
 (5) and (8) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute
 /1/ (the Statute) by refusing to furnish necessary information requested
 under section 7114(b)(4) of the Statute /2/ by Local 1760, American
 Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO (the Union) in connection
 with the processing of an employee's grievance.
 
    The stipulated facts, including the parties' exhibits, show that an
 employee in a bargaining unit exclusively represented by the Union filed
 a grievance under the negotiated grievance procedure which alleged that
 she had been improperly denied a merit promotion by the Respondent's
 Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA).  The grievance stated, "(T)he
 Merit Promotion Plan was not followed by this office when they selected
 two candidates for the position of Hearing Assistant, GS-6 on March 4,
 1982.  Specifically, no vacancy announcement was posted and neither was
 a promotion committee or best qualified list established.  This was a
 violation of the procedures in the Merit Promotion Plan." After filing
 the grievance, the employee designated the Union as her representative,
 and in order to support the grievance, the Union requested "the entire
 promotion package culminating in the Best Qualified List 20001G-82S . .
 . " The Respondent forwarded some of the promotion package, including,
 among other items, a copy of the vacancy announcement and a copy of the
 best qualified list of the individual candidates who were in the group
 from which the selection was made.  The Respondent did not forward the
 entire promotion package as requested by the Union.  Some of these
 documents were sanitized by deleting employee names, to make it
 impossible for the Union to determine what documents or ratings applied
 to the various candidates.  Items not supplied were documents such as
 the candidates' appraisals, copies of employee awards, copies of the
 SF-171 application forms, and copies of the material used by the
 promotion committee in establishing the point scores given each of the
 applicants for the promotion positions.
 
    The issue herein is whether the information requested by the Union
 but not supplied by the Respondent was necessary within the meaning of
 section 7114(b)(4)(B) of the Statute.  Specifically, where a grievance
 has been filed, an agency must furnish requested information which is,
 among other things, necessary for the Union to represent the employee(s)
 in the grievance proceeding.  See Social Security Administration, 15
 FLRA No. 180 (1984).  See also Veterans Administration Regional Office,
 Denver, Colorado, 10 FLRA 453 (1982) and Veterans Administration, Iron
 Mountain, Michigan, 10 FLRA 468 (1982).  The Authority concludes that
 the entire promotion package, including documents such as the
 candidates' appraisals, copies of employee awards, copies of the SF-171
 application forms, and copies of the material used by the promotion
 committee in establishing the point scores given each of the applicants
 for the promotion positions, requested by but not furnished to the
 Union, was not necessary within the meaning of section 7114(b)(4)(B) of
 the Statute.
 
    As noted above, the Union's request for information was made pursuant
 to the filing of a grievance which asserted as its basis that no vacancy
 announcement was posted, nor was a promotion committee or best qualified
 list established.  The record indicates, and the Authority finds, that
 the Respondent complied with the Union's request by providing, among
 other things, a copy of the vacancy announcement and a copy of the best
 qualified list.  Such information alone would have enabled the Union to
 determine that both a promotion committee and a best qualified list were
 established.  The additional information requested by the Union would
 not have established whether the vacancy announcement had been posted,
 nor does it appear from the record that the information not furnished by
 the Respondent was necessary within the meaning of the Statute as it did
 not relate to the basis of the grievance.  Thus, the Authority concludes
 that the General Counsel has failed to establish that the information
 requested by the Union but not furnished by the Respondent was necessary
 for the Union to discharge its responsibilities under the Statute,
 particularly in view of the fact that the documents provided by the
 Respondent fulfilled its obligation to furnish information necessary for
 the Union to represent the grievant.  See, e.g., United States
 Environmental Protection Agency, Health Effects Research Laboratory,
 Cincinnati, Ohio, 16 FLRA No. 16 (1984);  Internal Revenue Servi