25:0969(80)AR - Air Force, Warner Robins Air Logistics Center, Robins AFB, GA and AFGE Local 987 -- 1987 FLRAdec AR

[ v25 p969 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:

 25 FLRA No. 80
 LOCAL 987
                                            Case No. 0-AR-1223
                         I.  Statement of the Case
    This matter is before the Authority on an exception to the award of
 Arbitrator Jack R. George filed by the Union under section 7122(a) of
 the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and
 part 2425 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations.
                  II.  Background and Arbitrator's Award
    The grievance protested the Activity's determination that the
 grievant was not entitled to work overtime on four days in December
 1985.  According to the Arbitrator, the grievant was asked by his
 supervisor in late November 1985 if he would like to work overtime on
 December 7 and 8.  For religious reasons, the grievant declined to work
 on the 7th, a Saturday, but indicated that he would be willing to work
 on Sunday, the 8th.  Early in December management determined that
 unplanned overtime would be required on December 4, 5 and 6 in addition
 to the overtime scheduled for December 7 and 8.  The grievant indicated
 that he would like to work the 4th, 5th and 6th, although he still
 declined the Saturday overtime.  Management informed the grievant that
 he must work both the 7th and 8th to be eligible for the overtime on the
 4th, 5th and 6th because the additional overtime and weekend continuity
 were required to complete the work to be done.  On the basis of his
 refusal to work on Saturday the 7th, the grievant was not permitted to
 work any of the overtime.
    The grievant filed a grievance contending that he had been unjustly
 eliminated from working overtime on the 4th, 5th, 6th and 8th of
 December and that he should be made whole for all lost income.  The
 grievance was submitted to arbitration.  The Arbitrator framed the issue
 as whether management adhered to the parties' contract in determining
 the grievant's entitlement to overtime on December 4, 5, 6 and 8, and if
 not, what should the remedy be?  The Arbitrator determined that under
 the contract, the grievant was not entitled to work overtime on the 4th,
 5th and 6th because that overtime was unplanned.  However, he upheld the
 grievance concerning overtime for the 8th.
    As to remedy, the Arbitrator stated that the most frequently used
 remedy in such cases is a monetary one, but make-up overtime within a
 reasonable time may also be an appropriate remedy.  The Arbitrator
 determined in this case that there was no clear showing of monetary
 loss, and that make-up overtime was a just remedy.  Accordingly, as a
 remedy, he ordered that "at the first opportunity the Grievant will be
 offered 8 hours make-up overtime above and beyond that to which he
 otherwise would be entitled."
                              III.  Exception
                              A.  Contentions
    The Union contends that the Arbitrator erred when he substituted his
 judgment by awarding the grievant make-up overtime for December 8,
 instead of money damages as required by the clear and unambiguous
 language of the parties' collective bargaining agreement.  The agreement
 provides that "(a)n employee improperly passed over for an overtime
 assignment will be made whole by a remedy of money damages unless
 management provides substantiating evidence that the employee's silence
 has contributed to the error." According to the Union, management never
 alleged that the grievant's silence contributed to the error.  The Union
 contends that the only award permitted in accordance with the agreement
 is a remedy of money damages, and the agreement does not permit the
 Arbitrator the option of awarding make-up overtime.
                        B.  Analysis and Conclusion
    We find that the Union's