34:0114(25)DA - DOD, DEFENSE INDUSTRIAL PLANT EQUIPMENT CENTER MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE and AFGE -- 1989 FLRAdec DA



[ v34 p114 ]
34:0114(25)DA
The decision of the Authority follows:


34 FLRA NO. 25



                   U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
           DEFENSE INDUSTRIAL PLANT EQUIPMENT CENTER
                       MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE
                          (Activity)

                              and

          AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES
                          (Petitioner)

                           4-DA-80001

ORDER GRANTING APPLICATION FOR REVIEW AND REMANDING CASE

     		      December 29,  1989

     Before Chairman McKee and Members Talkin and Armendariz.

I. Statement of the Case

     This case is before the Authority on an application for
review filed by the National Federation of Federal Employees
(NFFE) under section 2422.17(a) of the Authority's Rules and
Regulations. NFFE seeks review of the Regional Director's
Decision and Order on Petition for Certification for Dues
Allotment.

     In her decision, the Regional Director addressed matters
raised by an amended petition for certification for dues
allotment filed by the American Federation of Government
Employees, AFL - CIO (AFGE) under section 7115(c) of the Federal
Service Labor - Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and
section 2422.2(d) of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. The
Regional Director's decision affected NFFE's interests as to an
existing unit for which NFFE was certified for dues allotment.

     In its application for review, NFFE alleges that it was
improperly denied the opportunity to intervene and participate in
the hearing on the amended petition. NFFE  requests the
Authority to set aside the Regional Director's decision and order
and grant NFFE the opportunity to participate in this matter as a
party/intervenor. Neither AFGE nor the Activity filed an
opposition to the application.

     Inasmuch as the Authority had two vacancies when this
application for review was received, Acting Chairman McKee issued
an Interim Order on July 24, 1989, directing that consideration
of the application be deferred until further notice. This interim
order preserved the parties' rights under the Statute to
Authority consideration of the Regional Director's decision.

     The Authority now considers this application for review. For
the reasons set forth below, we grant the application and remand
the case to the Regional Director to take further appropriate
action as directed.

II. Background and Regional Director's Decision

     On August 12, 1988, AFGE filed a petition for certification
for dues allotment in a unit which included employees of the
Defense Industrial Plant Equipment Center (DIPEC) who are
stationed at DIPEC facilities in Stockton, California; Columbus,
Ohio; and Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. The petition specifically
excluded employees at the DIPEC facilities in Memphis, Tennessee.
At the time of the original petition, NFFE Local 259 had an
existing dues allotment agreement with DIPEC for employees in
Memphis.

     According to NFFE, it first learned of AFGE's petition in
December 1988 when it received notification from the Authority's
Regional Office that a hearing on the petition was scheduled for
January 12, 1989. NFFE states that in conversations with a
representative of the Authority's Regional Office, it confirmed
that AFGE's petition did not include the Memphis employees and
that, consequently, NFFE had no standing as an intervenor in the
case.

     After the hearing began on January 12, 1989, the hearing
officer permitted AFGE to amend its petition to include the
Memphis employees so that the proposed unit for dues allotment
purposes became a Command-wide unit. There was no NFFE
representative at the hearing. The hearing proceeded to
completion. According to NFFE, neither NFFE nor the Memphis
employees were notified of the amended petition. 

     On March 29,  1989, the Regional Director issued her
decision and order. The Regional Director noted that a hearing
officer had held a hearing and that NFFE "was served with notice
of the hearing, but did not appear." Decision and Order at 1 n.*.
The Regional Director found that: (1) the Command-wide unit
sought by AFGE's amended petition--DIPEC employees including
those in Memphis--is an appropriate unit within the meaning of
section 7112 of the Statute; and (2) AFGE's petition for
certification for dues allotment was a valid one. The Regional
Director also found that the unit for which NFFE Local 259 was
certified for dues allotment--DIPEC employees who work in
Memphis--is no longer appropriate.

III. NFFE's Application for Review

     NFFE contends that it was improperly denied the opportunity
to intervene and participate in this matter. NFFE asserts that it
should be considered a "party" under section 2422.17(a) of our
Regulations for purposes of filing an application for review
because the Regional Director found that an established NFFE unit
is no longer appropriate.

     NFFE contends that there were "numerous violations (of the
Authority's Regulations) which occurred in association with the
instant case." Application for Review at 4. According to NFFE,
the following sections of the Regulations were violated in the
manner stated:

     (1) section 2422.8(c), when the Regional Office failed to
include a copy of the original petition along with the hearing
notice served on NFFE in December 1988;

     (2) section 2422.2(e)(3), when NFFE was not served with
notice of the amended petition even though it bec