34:0315(60)AR - U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE WARNER ROBINS AIR LOGISTICS CENTER ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, GEORGIA and AFGE, LOCAL 987 -- 1990 FLRAdec AR



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34:0315(60)AR
The decision of the Authority follows:


  34 FLRA NO. 60
  

               U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE
              WARNER ROBINS AIR LOGISTICS CENTER
                ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, GEORGIA

                              and

          AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES
                           LOCAL 987

                           0-AR-1591

			   DECISION

     			January 17, 1990

     Before Chairman McKee and Members Talkin and Armendariz.

I. Statement of the Case

     This matter is before the Authority on an exception to the
award of Arbitrator Mathew W. Jewett. The Arbitrator found that a
10-day suspension of a unit employee was for just cause and,
accordingly, denied a grievance contesting the suspension.

     The American Federation of Government Employees, Local 987
(the Union) filed an exception 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 Warner Robins Air Logistics Center, Department of the Air
Force, Warner Robins, Georgia (the Agency) filed an opposition to
the exception.

     For the reasons set forth below, we find that the Union
failed to demonstrate that the award is contrary to law, rule,
regulation, or other grounds as set forth in section 7122(a) of
the Statute. We deny the exception.

II. Background and Arbitrator's Award

     The grievant is employed by the Agency as a Sheet Metal
Mechanic Leader. On July 28, 1987, the grievant was missing from
his assigned work area from about 12:30 p.m. to the end of his
shift at 4:15 p.m. Efforts to locate him, including having him
paged over the public address system, were unsuccessful. The
grievant did not punch out at the end of his work day on July 28
and his time card was missing.

     Although the grievant claimed that he had been in the
Material Inventory Control (M.I.C.) area for the entire 4 hours,
he was listed as being absent without leave for the period. After
an investigation of the incident, he was given a 10-day
suspension for his absence on July 28.

     The grievant filed a grievance contesting the suspension,
and requesting that the suspension be removed from his record and
that he be made whole for the time spent on suspension. The
grievance was not settled and was submitted to arbitration.

     The Union argued before the Arbitrator that the 10-day
suspension was not for just cause. The Union claimed that the
grievant was on limited duty, assigned to desk work in the M.I.C.
area on the date in question, and that no attempt had been made
to locate him