43:0303(30)AR - - AFGE Local 1770 and Navy, XVII, Airborne Corps, Fort Bragg, NC - - 1991 FLRAdec AR - - v43 p303



[ v43 p303 ]
43:0303(30)AR
The decision of the Authority follows:


43 FLRA No. 30

FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
WASHINGTON, D.C.

AMERICAN FEDERATION
 OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES
LOCAL 1770

(Union)

and

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY
XVIII, AIRBORNE CORPS
FORT BRAGG, NORTH CAROLINA
(Agency)

0-AR-2159

ORDER DENYING MOTION FOR RECONSIDERATION

November 25, 1991

Before Chairman McKee and Members Talkin and Armendariz.

I. Statement of the Case

This matter is before the Authority on a motion filed by the Agency seeking reconsideration of an Authority Order dismissing the Agency's exceptions to an arbitration award. The Authority dismissed the exceptions because the Agency failed to respond to an earlier Order granting the Agency an opportunity to correct deficiencies in its exceptions. The Union did not file an opposition to the Agency's motion for reconsideration.

For the following reasons, we conclude that the Agency has not established extraordinary circumstances warranting reconsideration of the Authority's Order dismissing the exceptions. Accordingly, we will deny the motion for reconsideration.

II. Background

The Agency filed exceptions to an award of Arbitrator Sue Olinger Shaw. By Order dated September 5, 1991, the Authority notified the Agency that its exceptions did not comply with certain procedural requirements. The Agency was directed to correct the deficiencies by September 18, 1991, and notified that failure to do so could result in dismissal of the exceptions. The Authority's Order was served on the Agency's representative on September 5, 1991, by certified mail, return receipt requested.

The Agency did not respond to the Authority's September 5 Order. Accordingly, by Order dated September 30, 1991, the Authority dismissed the Agency's exceptions. The Authority's September 30 Order also was served on the Agency's representative by certified mail, return receipt requested.

III. The Agency's Motion for Reconsideration

The Agency states that it did not receive either the September 5 or the September 30 Order until October 3, 1991. The Agency contends that as it was not aware of the Authority's September 5 Order until the time limit in which to comply with the Order had expired, extraordinary circumstances exist warranting reconsideration of the Authority's dismissal of the exceptions.

The Agency asserts that both Orders were sent to the following "incorrect" address:

Captain Rex Staub
Agency Representative
U.S. Department of the Army
Headquarters, XVIII Airborne Corps
and Fort Bragg
Fort Bragg, NC 28307-5000

Id. (emphasis in original). According to the Agency, the "correct" address is:

Captain Rex Staub
Agency Representative
Office of the Staff Judge Advocate
XVIII Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg
Fort Bragg, NC 28307-5000

Id. at 2 (emphasis in original).

IV. Analysis and Conclusions

Section 2429.17 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations permits a party that can establish the existence of "extraordinary circumstances" to request reconsideration of a final decision or order of the Authority. For the following reasons, we conclude that the Agency has failed to establish such extraordinary circumstances in this case.

The Authority's September 5 Order was served on the Agency's representative of record by certified mail, return receipt requested on that date. The record reveals, and the Agency does not dispute, that the Order was mailed to the address provided by the Agency in its exceptions. Clearly, the Agency was responsible for ensuring that the Authority was provided with the correct mailing address. Accordingly, the Agency's assertion that the Authority's Order was sent to the incorrect address does not establish extraordinary circumstances.

Moreover, the "incorrect" address is part of the Agency's property. Indeed, the Authority's September 30 Order, also mailed to the "incorrect" address, was received by the Agency representative on October 3, 1991. It appears, in this circumstance, that the delay in receipt of the September 5 Order resulted from delays in the Agency's internal mail system. Such delays do not establish extraordinary circumstances. See U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Social Security Administration, Area II, Philadelphia Region and American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1923, 42 FLRA 1105, 1107-08 (1991).

The Agency has not established extr