U.S. Federal Labor Relations Authority

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The decision of the Authority follows:

28 FLRA NO. 63






Case No. 0-AR-1350


I. Statement of the Case

This matter is before us on exceptions to the award of Arbitrator J. W. Dees filed by the Union under section 7122 (a) of the Federal Service Labor - Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and part 2425 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. The Agency filed an opposition. 1

II. Background and Arbitrator's Award

In June 1985, the Agency and the grievant entered into an agreement which settled an earlier grievance against the Agency. The grievant agreed to give up his full-time permanent position of Deputy U.S. Marshal and the Agency agreed to appoint him to the position of Intermittent Deputy U.S. Marshal. The agreement provided that the grievant would be employed for a minimum of 39 hours per week and that his appointment would be for a period of no less than 2 years except for reasonable cause. The agreement also provided that the grievant "hereby waives and forever relinquishes any reemployment or reinstatement rights to a full-time permanent competitive service position." Attachment to award. In 1986, the Agency laid off the grievant due to Gramm - Rudman Act budget reductions.

The issue submitted to arbitration was whether the Agency had reasonable cause to lay off the grievant. The Arbitrator found that inasmuch as additional funds had been allotted to the Agency, the grievant should be reimbursed for the 187.5 hours of work which he lost and that he should be allowed to complete the 2-year appointment at 39 hours per week working time in accordance with the agreement.

III. Discussion

In its exceptions the Union contends that the award does not draw its essence from the agreement and is contrary to law and regulation. The Union maintains that the Arbitrator did not allow sufficient evidence to be introduced at the hearing to prove the meaning and intent of "reasonable cause" in the settlement agreement and that he incorrectly considered whether the Gramm - Rudman Act budget cuts constituted "reasonable cause." The Union contends that the grievant should not be terminated at the conclusion of his appointment as the Arbitrator's award would permit. In its opposition, the Agency maintains that there are no grounds for rescinding the settlement agreement or reinstating the grievant to a permanent position as the Union requests.

We conclude that the Union has failed to establish that the Arbitrator's award is deficient on any of the grounds set forth in section 7122(a) of the Statute; that is, that the award is contrary to any law, rule, or regulation or that the award is deficient on other grounds similar to those applied by Federal courts in private sector labor-management relations. See, for example, U.S. Department of Labor and American Federation of Government Employees, Local 12, 17 FLRA 952 (1985) (exceptions attempting to relitigate the merits of a case before the Authority and constituting nothing more than disagreement with an arbitrator's findings of fact, reasoning and conclusions, and interpretation and application of an agreement, provide no basis for finding an award deficient); Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia and Tidewater Virginia Federal Employees Metal Trades Council, AFL - CIO, 26 FLRA No. 94 (1987) (denying exception alleging that award was deficient because of arbitrator's decision not to admit union exhibit) and cases cited therein. Accordingly, the Union's exceptions are denied.

Issued, Washington, D.C., July 31, 1987.

Jerry L. Calhoun, Chairman

Henry B. Frazier III, Member

Jean McKee, Member



Footnote 1 In its opposition, the Agency contends that the Union's exceptions are untimely. We find that the exceptions were timely filed under the Authority's Rules and Regulations.