[ v10 p633 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
10 FLRA No. 103 U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS LITTLE ROCK DISTRICT LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS Activity and AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 3266, AFL-CIO Labor Organization/Petitioner and NATIONAL FEDERATION OF FEDERAL EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 871 Incumbent/Intervenor and INTERNATIONAL BROTHERHOOD OF ELECTRICAL WORKERS, LOCAL 2219, AFL-CIO Incumbent/Intervenor /1/ Case No. 6-RO-85 DECISION AND ORDER Upon a petition duly filed under section 7111(b)(1) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute), a hearing was held before a hearing officer of the Authority. The Authority has reviewed the hearing officer's rulings made at the hearing and finds that they are free from prejudicial error. The rulings are hereby affirmed. Upon the entire record in this case, the Authority finds: The Petitioner, American Federation of Government Employees, Local 3266, AFL-CIO (AFGE), seeks to exclusively represent all non-supervisory, non-professional employees of the Millwood Resident Office, whose work stations are located at Millwood Lake, De Queen Lake, Dierko Lake, and Gillham Lake, Arkansas. The Millwood Resident Office is part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District, Little Rock Arkansas (the Activity). Excluded would be all professional employees, management officials, supervisors, and employees described in section 7112(b)(2), (3), (4), (6) and (7) of the Statute. /2/ The mission of the Little Rock District is to plan, design, and construct river, harbor and flood control works; to maintain and operate completed flood control, river and harbor facilities or to exercise general supervision over the maintenance of these facilities when local interests have operating responsibility; to make survey investigations to determine the engineering and economic feasibility of adopting Federal projects or modifying existing projects to conform with specific Congressional authorization; to administer the laws concerning protection and preservation of the navigable waters of the District; to acquire, manage, and dispose of real estate; to act as point of contact between Arkansas State government agencies and four Corps Districts and two Divisions which have operating responsibilities in the State; to provide review and inspection services to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and to provide review and support services to the State of Arkansas for the inspection of non-Federal dams. The Little Rock District is organizationally composed of a District Office and nine field offices, including the Millwood Resident Office. The Millwood Resident Office includes the Tri-Lakes of Gillham, Dierko and De Queen, which are lake reservoirs. The Millwood Resident Office shares similar mission and functional responsibilities with other resident offices that have lake reservoir responsibilities in the District. The Activity contends that the petitioned for unit is not appropriate under the criteria of section 7112(a)(1) of the Statute, /3/ as the employees sought do not share a community of interest separate and distinct from other non-professional employees in the Little Rock District, currently represented by various other labor organizations. /4/ It further contends that the unit sought would result in fragmentation and proliferation of units in the Little Rock District resulting in an adverse impact on effective dealings and efficiency of agency operations. The Activity contends that, to avoid this result, the employees sought should be placed in any one or more of the existing exclusively recognized units. NFFE contends that the Millwood Resident Office employees should be accreted into its District-wide residual unit. The record reveals that the employees sought share job classifications in common with those in the other components of the Activity. Further, the employees sought share the same working conditions and are covered by the same personnel policies and practices as all other non-professional employees of the Activity. Thus, the employees are in the same District-wide area of consideration for reduction-in-force and promotion actions. Moreover, the District Office is responsible for the overall policy development and program evaluation of all components of the Activity, including the administration of all labor-management relations functions, which are centralized in its Management and Employees Relations Branch. Accordingly, the Authority concludes that the unit which the Petitioner seeks to represent is not appropriate for exclusive recognition under section 7112(a)(1) of the Statute because the employees sought do not have a clear and identifiable community of interest separate and distinct from other employees in the Little Rock District. With regard to Intervenor NFFE's contention that the employees sought herein should be accreted to its District-wide residual unit, the Authority finds that, except for Wage Board reservoir employees, the employees of the Millwood Resident Office sought herein share a clear and identifiable community of interest with the employees presently in the NFFE unit, who share the same job classifications, working conditions, personnel policies and practices, and are also in the same District-wide area of consideration for reduction-in-force and promotion actions. Moreover, the administration of all labor-management relations functions is centralized in the District Office's Management and Employees Relations Branch. Thus, including the foregoing employees in NFFE's residual unit meets the community of interest criterion and will promote effective dealings and efficiency of agency operations since it will avoid fragmentation of employees having identical job classifications. Therefore, the Authority concludes that, except for reservoir employees, the employees of the Millwood Resident Office sought herein shall be included in the NFFE District-wide unit. /5/ ORDER IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the petition in Case No. 6-RO-85, be, and it hereby is, dismissed to the extent that it seeks a separate unit of all non-supervisory, non-professional employees of the Millwood Resident Office, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District, Little Rock, Arkansas. IT IS HEREBY FURTHER ORDERED that the unit for which the National Federation of Federal Employees, Local 871 was certified on September 2, 1971, be, and it hereby is, clarified by including in said unit those eligible employees of the Millwood Resident Office, except for the Wage Board reservoir employees, who were administratively transferred to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District, Little Rock, Arkansas, as a result of a reorganization instituted on October 1, 1980. Issued, Washington, D.C., December 10, 1982 Ronald W. Haughton, Chairman Henry B. Frazier III, Member Leon B. Applewhaite, Member FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY --------------- FOOTNOTES$ --------------- /1/ In a letter to the Authority's Regional Office, the President of Local 2219, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, AFL-CIO (IBEW), indicated that IBEW wished to withdraw as a contender to represent the employees at issue herein. IBEW was not represented at the hearing. The Authority shall consider such action by IBEW as a disclaimer of interest in representing the unit sought herein. /2/ The Millwood Resident Office was organizationally part of the Tulsa District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers until it was administratively transferred, intact, to the Little Rock District on October 1, 1980. While they had been part of the Tulsa District, the Millwood Resident Office employees were exclusively represented as part of a larger unit in the Tulsa District by the Petitioner herein, AFGE Local 3266. /3/ Section 7112(a)(1) provides in pertinent part: Sec. 7112. Determination of appropriate units for labor organization representation (a)(1) The Authority shall determine . . . any unit to be an appropriate unit only if the determination will ensure a clear and identifiable community of interest among the employees in the unit and will promote effective dealings with, and efficiency of the operations of, the agency involved. /4/ As applicable herein, IBEW exclusively represents two district-wide units in the Little Rock District, a unit of non-supervisory Wage Board reservoir employees and a unit of non-professional hydroelectric generating plant employees, and the Incumbent/Intervenor, National Federation of Federal Employees, Local 871 (NFFE), on September 2, 1971, was certified as exclusive representative for a then district-wide residual unit of all full-time and part-time non-professional employees, Classification Act (GS) and Wage Grade employees of the Activity. The NFFE certification specifically excludes "employees of Units having Exclusive Recognition currently, as follows: NFFE LU 1679, Pine Bluff Resident Office, IBEW LU 2219 Power Plant employees, and IBEW LU 2219 Reservoir employees." /5/ As to the remaining employees of the Millwood Office who are reservoir employees, as previously noted (supra n. 1), IBEW is the exclusive representative of a unit of all Wage Board reservoir employees within the Activity, but has disclaimed interest in the unit as sought in the petition. Thus, the Authority at this time will take no action with regard to such employees, who appear to share a community of interest with the employees represented by IBEW.