[ v20 p800 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
20 FLRA No. 97 TIDEWATER VIRGINIA FEDERAL EMPLOYEES METAL TRADES COUNCIL, AFL-CIO Union and NAVY PUBLIC WORKS CENTER, NORFOLK, VIRGINIA Agency Case No. 0-NG-1167 DECISION AND ORDER ON NEGOTIABILITY ISSUE The petition for review in this case comes before 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 one Union proposal. Upon careful consideration of the entire record, including the parties' contentions, the Authority makes the following determinations. /1/ Union Proposal 4b. For those employees who wish to have their pay checks and LES delivered by mail, but who do not wish to have them sent to their homes address, the Employer will establish and maintain a central location to which the employees checks and LES will be mailed. This location shall be within the Employer's spaces and employees may report there to pick up their checks and LES on payday. The Employer will publicize this option and make it available to all unit employees. The dispute herein arose as a result of the Agency's implementation of a new policy, whereby in lieu of hand delivery of paychecks and leave and earning statements (LES) it offered employees the option of mail distribution of paychecks and LES to a non-work address or direct deposit of employee pay to employee accounts in financial institutions. The Union's proposal, however, by its express terms, would provide employees with a third option by requiring the Agency to establish and maintain a central location at the work site to which employees could choose to have their paychecks and LES mailed. In this respect, in Federal Employees Metal Trades Council, AFL-CIO and Department of the Navy, Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, California, 16 FLRA No. 88 (1984), petition for review filed, No. 85-7039 (9th Cir. Jan. 22, 1985), the Authority determined that an agency's selection of the method of employee paycheck distribution concerned the methods and means of performing work within the meaning of section 7106(b)(1) of the Statute /2/ and thus, a Union proposal pertaining to paycheck distribution was negotiable only at the election of the agency. More recently, in Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, Navy Public Works Center, Norfolk, Virginia, 18 FLRA No. 79 (1985), the Authority, relying on its earlier decision in Mare Island Shipyard, found the Respondent Department of the Navy did not violate sections 7116(a)(1) and (5) of the Statute by preventing Respondent Navy Public Work Center from bargaining with the exclusive representative of unit employees regarding a unilateral change in the method of distributing unit employees' paychecks and earnings statements. /3/ Consequently, based on Navy Public Works Center, and Mare Island Shipyard, the Authority concludes that the proposal in dispute herein which would alter the method of employee paycheck and LES distribution, constitutes a method and means of performing work within the meaning of section 7106(b)(1) of the Statute and is negotiable only at the Agency's election. Therefore, since the Agency in this case has elected not to bargain on the method of paycheck and LES distribution the disputed proposal herein is outside the duty to bargain. /4/ Accordingly, pursuant to section 2424.10 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations, IT IS ORDERED that the Union's petition for review be, and it hereby is, dismissed. Issued, Washington, D.C., December 4, 1985. (s)--- Henry B. Frazier III, Acting Chairman (s)--- William J. McGinnis, Jr., Member FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY --------------- FOOTNOTES$ --------------- /1/ The Union did not file a Reply Brief in this case. /2/ Section 7106(b)(1) provides in pertinent part: 7106. Management rights (b) Nothing in this section shall preclude any agency and any labor organization from negotiating-- (1) at the election of the agency, ... on the ... methods, and means of performing work(.) /3/ See also Department of the Navy, Washington, D.C. and Department of the Navy, U.S. Naval Supply Center, Oakland, California and American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1533, AFL-CIO, 19 FLRA No. 7 (1985), petition for review filed sub nom. American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 1533 v. FLRA, No. 85-7495 (9th Cir. September 6, 1985), wherein the Authority determined that since a proposed change in the method of paycheck and savings bond distribution concerned the method and means of performing work within the meaning of section 7106(b)(1) of the Statute and was negotiable only at the election of the agency, the Supply Center did not violate the Statute by refusing to bargain on such change. /4/ In view of the Authority's decision herein, the Authority finds it unnecessary to consider the other contentions of the Agency with respect to the negotiability of the proposal.