[ v16 p582 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
16 FLRA No. 83 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION FEDERAL RAILROAD ADMINISTRATION ALASKA RAILROAD Activity and UNITED TRANSPORTATION UNION Union Case No. O-AR-504 DECISION This matter is before the Authority on exceptions to the award of Arbitrator Charles P. Flynn filed by the Activity under section 7122(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute and part 2425 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. The dispute in this matter arose when the trainmaster, a management official on a particular train, disassembled and stored a passenger's rifle for safekeeping. The train crew filed a grievance alleging that the trainmaster violated the parties' collective bargaining agreement by performing work assertedly reserved to bargaining-unit employees, i.e., by storing an item that was supposed to be handled as checked baggage by a unit employee. The Arbitrator sustained the grievance and awarded compensation to the unit employee who otherwise would have performed the task. As one of its exceptions, the Activity contends that the award is contrary to section 7106(a)(2)(B) of the Statute. The Authority agrees. In American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, National Joint Council of Food Inspection Locals and Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Quality Service, Washington, D.C., 9 FLRA 663 (1982), the Authority considered a proposal (proposal 1), which provided, in part, that management could not assign duties normally performed by employees in the bargaining unit to supervisors, except in specific circumstances. The Authority found that the proposal would improperly limit and thereby directly interfere with the discretion, inherent in management's right to assign work, to determine which employees would receive particular work assignments. The Authority therefore held that the disputed portion of the proposal conflicted with management's right to assign work to employees pursuant to section 7106(a)(2)(B) of the Statute. In that regard, it is well-established that an arbitrator's award may not interpret or enforce a provision of a collective bargaining agreement so as to deny the authority of an agency to exercise its rights under section 7106(a) of the Statute, e.g., American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 1968 and Department of Transportation, Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, Massena, New York, 5 FLRA 70, 79 (1981), aff'd sub nom. American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 1968 v. Federal Labor Relations Authority, 691 F.2d 565 (D.C. Cir. 1982), cert. denied, 103 S.Ct. 2085 (1983); or result in the substitution of the arbitrator's judgment for that of the agency in the exercise of those rights, e.g., Veterans Administration Hospital, Lebanon, Pennsylvania and American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 1966, 11 FLRA No. 43 (1983). In terms of this case, the Arbitrator sustained the grievance and awarded compensation on the basis of his determination that the trainmaster was precluded from performing bargaining-unit work. The Arbitrator's award therefore improperly limits and directly interferes with management's discretion to determine which employee would perform the particular work assignment in the circumstances described. Consequently, the award is contrary to section 7106(a)(2)(B) of the Statute. Accordingly, the award is set aside. /1/ Issued, Washington, D.C., November 27, 1984 Henry B. Frazier III, Acting Chairman Ronald W. Haughton, Member FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY --------------- FOOTNOTES$ --------------- /1/ In view of this decision, it is not necessary to address the Agency's other exceptions to the award.