24:0940(91)NG - AFGE Local 987 and Air Force, Warner Robins Air Force Logistics Center, Robins AFB, GA -- 1986 FLRAdec NG



[ v24 p940 ]
24:0940(91)NG
The decision of the Authority follows:


 24 FLRA No. 91
 
 AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT 
 EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO, LOCAL 987
 Union
 
 and
 
 DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE 
 WARNER ROBINS AIR FORCE LOGISTICS CENTER
 ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, GEORGIA
 Agency
 
                                            Case No. 0-NG-1309
 
                 DECISION AND ORDER OF NEGOTIABILITY ISSUE
 
                         I.  Statement of the Case
 
    This case is before the Authority because of a negotiability appeal
 filed under section 7105(a)(2)(E) of the Federal Service
 Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute).  The case concerns the
 negotiability of a Union proposal that Robins Air Force Base "allow Gate
 12 (North end of Base) to remain operational on the current hours
 scheduled." We find that the proposal is not negotiable.
 
                       II.  Positions of the Parties
 
    The Agency states that, following the sharply increased terrorist
 activity beginning in the late 1970's, the Air Force began to tighten
 the security of its installations in order to better safeguard and
 protect its facilities, aircraft and employees.  Gate 12 is located at
 the North end of the runway, and the Agency states that its closure is
 intended to prevent access to Robins AFB's flight line area from outside
 the base.  The Agency argues that (1) the decision to close Gate 12 is
 an exercise of management's right to determine its internal security
 practices under section 7106(a)(1) of the Statute, and that such
 determination is not negotiable;  and (2) the proposal violates
 management's right to determine the numbers, types, and grades of
 employees assigned to a work project under section 7106(b)(1).
 
    The Union states in its Petition for Review that the intent of its
 proposal is "to continue the manning of Gate 12 for the entrance and
 exit for personnel working in the SAC (Strategic Air Command) Location."
 According to the Union, before the Agency decided to close the gate, the
 gate had been staffed before work and at the end of the day shift "to
 allow employees easier access to their remote area jobs and also to be
 able to leave the area, without traveling some 3 1/2 miles through the
 heavy traffic on the main-stream of the work force." Union's Petition
 for Review.  The Union did not provide any arguments in its petition for
 review supporting the negotiability of the proposal, nor did it file a
 reply brief.
 
                              III.  Analysis
 
    An agency's right to determine its internal security practices
 includes the right to determine what is necessary to safeguard its
 physical property against internal or external risks.  See, for example,
 National Federation of Federal Employees, Local 29 and Department of the
 Army, Kansas City District, U.S. Army Corps. of Engineers, Kansas City,
 Missouri, 21 FLRA No. 32 (1986) (Union Proposal 1), petition for review
 filed sub nom. National Federation of Federal Employees, Local 29 v.
 FLRA, No. 86-1308 (D.C. Cir. May 28, 1986).  In this case, the Agency
 has determined that it is essential to the security of the flight line
 on the base to close Gate 12.  The Union's proposal that the gate be
 kept open negates management's internal security plan, and therefore
 violates the Agency's right to determine its internal security
 practices.  See American Federation of State, County and Municipal
 Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 2910 and The Library of Congress, 15 FLRA 612
 (1984) (in which the Authority found that a union proposal that a roof
 door be accessible to employees by key effectively negated an essential
 component of the Agency's plan to secure its physical property, and was
 therefore outside the duty to bargain).  Moreover, the proposal does not
 concern the impact and implementation of the Agency's decision to close
 the gate;  rather, it would require the Agency to bargain over the
 substance of its decision.
 
                              IV.  Conclusion
 
    We find that the Union's proposal directly interferes with the
 Agency's right to determine its internal security practices and is
 therefore outside the duty to bargain.  In view of this finding, it is
 unnecessary to pass on the Agency's further argumen