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The decision of the Authority follows:
11 FLRA NO. 98
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY, NAVAL AVIONICS CENTER INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA Activity/Petitioner and AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 1744 AFL-CIO Labor Organization Case No. 5-CU-36
Upon a petition duly filed with the Federal Labor Relations Authority under section 7111(b)(2) of the Federal Labor - Management Relations Statute (the Statute), a hearing was held before a hearing officer of the Authority. The hearing officer's rulings made at the hearing are free from prejudicial error and are hereby affirmed.
Upon the entire record in this case, including the parties' contentions, 1 the Authority finds: The American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1744, AFL - CIO (AFGE), was recognized on November 6, 1967 as the exclusive bargaining representative for a unit of all nonprofessional graded and ungraded employees of the United States Department of the Navy, Naval Avionics Center, Indianapolis, Indiana (the Activity).
The Activity filed the instant petition seeking to clarify the status of approximately nine employees comprising a printing/duplicating branch 2 which has been organizationally transferred from the Activity and its parent organization, the Naval Air Systems Command, to the Navy Publications and Printing Service (NPPS).
There are approximately 1,600 employees in the Activity-wide bargaining unit. The Activity is an electronics technical and materiel acquisition center. The duplicating branch continues to be responsible [ v11 p591 ] for meeting the duplicating requirements of the Activity, as well as other Navy organizations. The work of the employees of this branch is performed in a shop which is physically separate from other employees of the Activity, and their work is unique.
On October 1, 1980, a reorganizational consolidated 55 shore activities, including the employees at issue here, into a single central publications and printing management organization for the Department of the Navy. As a result, the employees at issue became an organizational entity of the NPPS known as the NPPS Detachment Branch Office. They remain at the same location, performing the same job functions under the same immediate supervision. However, they now report through a new chain of command to the NPPS headquarters in Great Lakes, Illinois, and are part of the Naval Supply Systems Command, rather than the Naval Air Systems Command, of which the Activity remains a part.
While all employees physically located at the Activity continue to share the same facilities such as parking and cafeteria, there is no integration of work processes, no job interchange, and little or no on-the-job intermingling inasmuch as the duplicating branch is the only operation of its kind at the Activity. Because of the unique job functions of the duplicating branch, these employees do not routinely acquire the same skills or share common career objectives with others at the Activity.
The Activity provides NPPS, through a host-tenant agreement, with various support services, including some personnel services. However, all hiring promotion and other personnel management authority has been shifted to NPPS. Technical and administrative direction over printing, including control over the budget, also has been assumed by NPPS. Thus, since the reorganization, NPPS, rather than the Activity, determines work priorities. Additionally, employees in the duplicating branch are now in a different competitive area for reduction-in-force purposes; position descriptions for all NPPS employees are being rewritten to ensure consistency throughout NPPS; and jobs are being reclassified.
The Activity contends, inter alia, that the employees of the duplicating branch no longer share a community of interest with the Activity's employees because they are now organizationally part of the NPPS which determines their working conditions. AFGE argues that the reorganization did not affect these employees' working conditions, job duties or physical location, and therefore they should remain in the Activity-wide unit despite the reorganization.
Under the circumstances, the Authority finds that the employees of NPPS at issue herein no longer share a community of interest with the Activity employees in the existing unit represented by AFGE. In this regard, it is noted particularly that the NPPS employees are now part of a new expanded organizational command; are under separate supervision and authority; have little contact and no interchange or transfers with Activity employees; and although the Activity provides personnel support to NPPS through a host-tenant agreement, the personnel policies and practices and matters affecting the working conditions of these employees [ v11 p592 ] are controlled by NPPS. Based on the foregoing, the Authority finds that the NPPS employees constitute a functionally distinct group of employees with no longer share a community of interest with the employees in the existing Activity-wide unit. Accordingly, the Authority shall order AFGE's certification for the Activity's bargaining unit clarified so as to exclude the NPPS employees. See Department of the Navy, Navy Regional Data Automation Center, Jacksonville, Florida, 4 FLRA No. 18 (1980); Department of Defense, Department of Navy, U.S. Naval Ordnance Station, Louisville, Kentucky, 6 FLRA No. 92 (1981).
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the unit of nonprofessional employees at the U.S. Department of the Navy, Naval Avionics Center, Indianapolis, Indiana, sought to be clarified, for which the American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1744, AFL - CIO, was certified as exclusive representative on November 6, 1967, be, and it hereby is, clarified by excluding from said unit the employees in the Navy Publications and Printing Service Detachment Branch Office, Indianapolis, Indiana.
Issued, Washington, D.C., March 14, 1983 Ronald W. Haughton, Chairman Henry B. Frazier III, Member Leon B. Applewhaite, Member FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
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Footnote 1 The Activity's brief was untimely and has not been considered by the Authority in reaching its decision herein.
Footnote 2 The employees at issue are incumbents in the position of Platemaker Equipment Operator, WG-7; Miscellaneous Duplicating Equipment Operator, WP-4; Multilith Equipment Operator, WP-9; and Clerk-Typist, GS-3.