37:0603(44)CA - - Treasury, Customs Service, Washington, DC and Customs Service Region IV, Miami, FL and NTEU - - 1990 FLRAdec CA - - v37 p603

Other Files: 


[ v37 p603 ]
37:0603(44)CA
The decision of the Authority follows:


37 FLRA No. 44

FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY

WASHINGTON, D.C.

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TREASURY

CUSTOMS SERVICE

WASHINGTON, D.C.

AND

CUSTOMS SERVICE

REGION IV

MIAMI, FLORIDA

(Respondents)

and

NATIONAL TREASURY EMPLOYEES UNION

(Charging Party)

4-CA-90748

DECISION AND ORDER

September 27, 1990

Before Chairman McKee and Members Talkin and Armendariz.

I. Statement of the Case

The Administrative Law Judge issued the attached decision finding that the Respondent violated section 7116(a)(1) and (8) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) by failing to take actions required by an arbitrator's final award. The Judge granted the General Counsel's motion for summary judgment and denied the Respondent's motion to dismiss the General Counsel's motion.

The Charging Party filed an exception only to the Judge's recommended Order. The Respondent filed an opposition to the Charging Party's exception. The General Counsel did not file an exception or an opposition.

Pursuant to section 2423.29 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations and section 7118 of the Statute, we have reviewed the rulings of the Judge and find no prejudicial error was committed. We affirm the rulings. Upon consideration of the Judge's Decision and the entire record, we adopt the Judge's findings, conclusions, and recommended Order, as modified below.

II. Charging Party's Exception

The Charging Party excepts to the Judge's recommended Order requiring that the Notice be posted only at the Respondent's facilities in Miami, Florida. The Charging Party argues that the Respondent's "failure to implement an arbitrator's award impacts on all employees in Region IV." Charging Party's Statement in Support of its Exception at 2. The Charging Party maintains that the Notice "should be posted . . . at all of the Respondent's facilities throughout the [R]egion because the violations of the Statute go to the very nature of the collective bargaining relationship." Id.

As an alternative, the Charging Party argues that the Notice should be posted at the Respondent's Jacksonville, Florida facilities, where the "underlying" arbitration hearing was conducted. Id.

III. Respondent's Opposition

The Respondent opposes the Charging Party's exception. The Respondent argues that the Judge's recommended posting location is "fair and just" and that no amendment to the Judge's recommended Order is necessary. Respondent's Opposition at 2. The Respondent argues that it would be unreasonable to require that the Notice be posted throughout Region IV because the Region is "a vast geographic area" and has "hundreds of U.S. Customs Service facilities." Id.

The Respondent also argues that it would be unreasonable to require that the Notice be posted at the Jacksonville, Florida facilities. The Respondent asserts that the "merits of the case which occurred in Jacksonville, Florida are unrelated to the collection of attorney's fees." Id. According to the Respondent, the divisions within Customs "which were responsible for the delay" in complying with the arbitration award were the National Finance Center, located in Indianapolis, Indiana, and the Southeast Regions's Executive Management Service, located in Miami, Florida. Id.

IV. Analysis and Conclusion

We find merit in the Charging Party's exception to the limited scope of the posting ordered by the Judge. We note, in this regard, that Notices provide evidence that rights guaranteed under the Statute will be vigorously enforced. Although violations of these rights often arise as a result of actions taken or not taken by individuals and particular remedies of these violations often will provide immediate benefits to individual employees, the statutory rights benefit and accrue to all employees and the Government as a whole. In addition, the posting of a Notice provides, for most unit employees, the only visible indication that a respondent recognizes and intends to fulfill its obligations under the Statute. As such, it is appropriate to require Notices to be posted in areas other than the particular locations where violations occurred.

In this case, the United States Customs Service, Region IV, Miami, Florida, was the party involved in the arbitration proceeding and was required, by section 7122(b) of the Statute, to take the actions required by the arbitrator's final award. The Judge found that Region IV violated section 7116(a)(1) and (8) of the Statute because it failed to comply with the arbitrator's award in a timely manner. We, therefore, find that a Region-wide posting is appropriate and will best effectuate the purposes and policies of the Statute. See, for example, Department of the Air Force, Ogden Air Logistics Center, Hill Air Force Base, Utah, 32 FLRA 277 (1988) (Authority ordered that Notice be posted throughout the Center, rather than just in one section); Department of Health and Human Services, Social Security Administration, Dallas Region, Dallas, Texas, 23 FLRA 807 (1986) (Authority ordered that Notice be posted at the Regional Office and all subordinate offices throughout the Region, rather than just in two District Offices within the Region), aff'd in relevant part and rev'd and remanded as to other matters in part sub nom. American Federation of Government Employees, SSA Council 220, AFL-CIO v. FLRA, 840 F.2d 925 (D.C. Cir. 1988). Accordingly, we will order a Region-wide posting of the remedial notice.

V. Order

Pursuant to section 2423.29 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations and section 7118 of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute, the United States Customs Service, and the United states Customs Service, Region IV, Miami, Florida, shall:

1. Cease and desist from:

(a) Failing and refusing to comply with the May 17, 1989, final award of Arbitrator J. Earl Williams or with any arbitrator's final award issued pursuant to the Federal Labor-Management Relation Statute.

(b) In any like or related manner, interfering with, restraining, or coercing their employees in the exercise of their rights assured by the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.

2. Take the following affirmative action in order to effectuate the purposes and policies of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute:

(a) Comply with the May 17, 1989, final award of Arbitrator J. Earl Williams by paying the National Treasury Employees Union $3,080.72 in reasonable attorney's fees and comply with any other arbitrator's final award issued pursuant to the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.

(b) Post at all its facilities located throughout Region IV copies of the attached Notice on forms to be furnished by the Federal Labor Relations Authority. Upon receipt of such forms, they shall be signed by the Regional Commissioner, and shall be posted and maintained for 60 consecutive days thereafter in conspicuous places, including all bulletin boards and other places where notices to their respective employees are customarily posted. Reasonable steps shall be taken to ensure that such Notices are not altered, defaced, or covered by any other material.

(c) Pursuant to section 2423.30 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations, notify the Regional Director, Region IV, Federal Labor Relations Authority, in writing, within 30 days from the date of this Order, as to what steps have been taken to comply.

NOTICE TO ALL EMPLOYEES

AS ORDERED BY THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY

AND TO EFFECTUATE THE POLICIES OF THE

FEDERAL SERVICE LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS STATUTE

WE NOTIFY OUR EMPLOYEES THAT:

WE WILL NOT fail and refuse to comply with the May 17, 1989, final award of Arbitrator J. Earl Williams or with any other arbitrator's final award issued pursuant to the Federal Labor-Management Relations Statute.

WE WILL NOT in any like or related manner, interfere with, restrain, or coerce our employees in the exercise of their rights assured them by the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.

WE WILL comply with the May 17, 1989, final award of Arbitrator J. Earl Williams by paying the National Treasury Employees Union $3,080.72 in reasonable attorney's fees and with any other arbitrator's final award issued pursuant to the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.

_______________________
(Activity)

Dated:__________ By:__________________________

(Signature) (Title)

This Notice must remain posted for 60 consecutive days from the date of posting, and must not be altered, defaced, or covered by any other material.

If employees have any questions concerning this Notice or compliance with its provisions, they may communicate directly with the Regional Director, Region IV, Federa