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15:0545(114)NG - AFGE, Council of SS District Office Locals and HHS, SSA -- 1984 FLRAdec NG

[ v15 p545 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:

 15 FLRA No. 114
                                            Case No. O-NG-741
    The petition for review in this case comes from the Authority
 pursuant to section 7105(a)(2)(E) of the Federal Service
 Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and presents an issue
 concerning the negotiability of the following Union proposal:
          Solicit volunteers among all qualified Claims Representatives
       before assigning people to the overpayment unit.
    Upon careful consideration of the entire record, including the
 parties' contentions, the Authority makes the following determination.
 According to the Union's statement of intent, the instant proposal would
 require management to solicit volunteers for a particular work
 assignment falling within the Claims Representatives' responsibilities,
 determine which volunteers are qualified for such work assignment, and
 select one of the qualified volunteers.  If there were no volunteers
 qualified for the assignment, the Agency could choose any employee it
 deems qualified to perform the work.  In this regard, the Union points
 out that establishment of qualifications for the assignment is
 exclusively the province of management.  Moreover, the Union avers that
 its proposal is not intended to permit it to bargain over the types of
 employees who would be assigned to the overpayment unit.  Rather, the
 proposal is consistent with the Agency's expressed intent to assign
 Claims Representatives to that unit.  /1/ Thus, the Union's proposal
 would apply only in the event management decided that Claims
 Representatives were the appropriate type of employees to be assigned to
 the overpayment unit.
    In Laborers International Union of North America, AFL-CIO, Local 1276
 and Veterans Administration, National Cemetery Office, San Francisco,
 California, 9 FLRA 703 (1982), the Authority reviewed a provision which,
 inter alia, required management when filling details to select the
 employee with the earliest service computation date when two or more
 employees were "equally well qualified and capable of performing the
 detail work." In finding that portion of Provision 1 to be a "procedure"
 to be observed by management in exercising its statutory authority
 within the meaning of section 7106(b)(2) of the Statute, the Authority
          Where, . . . in management's judgment, two or more employees
       are equally qualified and capable of performing the work, the
       selection of any one of those employees to perform the work would
       be consistent with management's exercise of its discretion.  Under
       such circumstances, the procedure by which employees previously
       judged by management to be equally qualified will be selected to
       perform the work is negotiable . . . .  /2/
    In like manner, the disputed proposal herein does not seek to
 prescribe the qualifications or occupational types required to work in
 the overpayment unit but, rather, merely sets forth a procedure to be
 used by management when selecting among employees determined by
 management to be qualified to perform the work, if management decides to
 use Claims Representatives in the unit.  Consequently, based on National
 Cemetery Office and the reasons and cases cited therein, the disputed
 proposal does not interfere with management's rights pursuant to section
 7106(a)(2)(A) and (B) of the Statute to assign employees and work, but
 instead constitutes a negotiable procedure as defined in section
    Accordingly, pursuant to section 2424.10 of the Authority's Rules and
 Regulations, IT IS ORDERED that the Agency shall upon request (or as
 otherwise agreed to by the parties) bargain concerning the disputed
 proposal.  /3/
    Issued, Washington, D.C., August 16, 1984
                                       Barbara J. Mahone, Chairman
                                       Ronald W. Haughton, Member
                                       Henry B. Frazier III, Member
                                       FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
 --------------- FOOTNOTES$ ---------------
    /1/ Union Reply Brief at 1-2.
    /2/ National Cemetery Office, 9 FLRA at 706.
    /3/ In deciding that the proposal is within the duty to bargain, the
 Authority makes no judgment as to its merits.