32:1156(154)AR - - Army Materials and Mechanics Research Center and AFGE Local 3404 - - 1988 FLRAdec AR - - v32 p1156
[ v32 p1156 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
32 FLRA No. 154
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
ARMY MATERIALS AND MECHANICS
AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 3404
Case No. 0-AR-1542
I. Statement of the Case
This matter is before the Authority on exceptions to the award of Arbitrator Blanca E. Torres. The grievant filed a grievance protesting his suspension for 14 days. The Arbitrator found that the 14-day suspension of the grievant was supported by substantial evidence. Therefore, the Arbitrator sustained the discipline and denied the grievance.
The Union filed exceptions under section 7122(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and part 2425 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. The Activity did not file an opposition.
We conclude that the Union has not established that the Arbitrator's award is deficient on any of the grounds set forth in section 7122(a) of the Statute. Accordingly, we will deny the exceptions.
II. Background and Arbitrator's Award
The grievant was suspended for 14 days for "creating a disturbance resulting in an adverse effect on morale, production and maintenance of proper discipline." Arbitrator's Award at 3. Specifically, while the grievant was cleaning a paint brush against the inside of a can of paint, the contents of the can landed on the grievant's supervisor. Because of two earlier confrontations the grievant had with this supervisor during the day of the incident, the Activity charged that the incident was intentional on the part of the grievant rather than accidental. The grievant filed a grievance protesting the suspension. The grievance was submitted to arbitration on the issue of whether substantial evidence supported the disciplinary action against the grievant. If so, the discipline was to be sustained. If not, the discipline was to be rescinded.
Based on the totality of the evidence, the Arbitrator determined that the incident was not accidental. Accordingly, the Arbitrator concluded that substantial evidence supported the 14-day suspension of the grievant. Therefore, the Arbitrator sustained the suspension and denied the grievance.
The Union contends that the award is deficient for the following reasons:
1. The Arbitrator does not specifically state whether she considered the table of disciplinary penalties in sustaining the suspension.
2. The Arbitrator failed to render her decision within the 30 days required by the parties' collective bargaining agreement.
3. The Arbitrator misstated facts and failed to specifically discuss pertinent evidence and testimony.
4. The award is not supported by the evidence presented.
We conclude that the Union has not established that the Arbitrator's award is deficient on any of the grounds set forth in section 7122(a) of the Statute. The Union has failed to establish that the award is contrary to any law, rule, or regulation or that the award is deficient on other grounds similar to those applied by Federal courts in private sector labor relations cases.
The Union's exceptions constitute nothing more than an attempt to relitigate the merits of the grievance and disagreement with the Arbitrator's findings of fact and evaluation of the evidence and testimony. They provide no basis for finding the arbitration award deficient. See, for example, American Federation of Government Employees, Local 85 and Veterans Administration Medical Center, Leavenworth, Kansas, 32 FLRA 53 (1988) (exceptions which constitute nothing more than an attempt to relitigate the merits of the grievance and disagreement with the arbitrator's findings of fact and evaluation of the evidence and testimony provide no basis for finding an award deficient); U.S. Army Plant Representative Office, Bell Helicopter Textron, Fort Worth, Texas and Local 2475, American Federation of Government Employees, 29 FLRA 1329 (1987) (an exception claiming after an award is issued that the award is defic