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The decision of the Authority follows:
47 FLRA No. 16
FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
NAVAL AVIATION DEPOT
NAVAL AIR STATION
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MACHINISTS AND
AEROSPACE WORKERS, LODGE 1584, AFL-CIO
ORDER DENYING APPLICATION FOR REVIEW
March 31, 1993
Before Chairman McKee and Members Talkin and Armendariz.
I. Statement of the Case
This case is before the Authority on an application for review filed by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) under section 2422.17(a) of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. The Activity and IAM Lodge 1584 jointly filed the petition in this case, seeking to amend the certification for an existing bargaining unit to reflect a change in: (1) the name of the Activity; and (2) the name of the exclusive representative. In her Decision and Order, the Acting Regional Director (ARD) granted the petition with respect to the name of the Activity, but denied the proposed amendment of certification to change the name of the exclusive representative and dismissed the petition in that respect. Accordingly, the ARD stated that she would issue a certification amending the name of the Activity.
IAM seeks review of the ARD's decision. The Activity did not file an opposition to the application for review. For the reasons discussed below, we find that IAM has not established any basis for review of the ARD's Decision and Order. Accordingly, we deny the application for review.
II. Background and Regional Director's Decision (*)
On January 6, 1977, IAM Lodge 739 was certified as the exclusive representative of a bargaining unit of approximately 2300 wage grade employees and Production Controllers employed at the Naval Air Rework Facility, Naval Air Station, Alameda, California. Effective April 20, 1987, the Activity's name was changed from the Naval Air Rework Facility, Naval Air Station, Alameda, California to the Naval Aviation Depot, Naval Air Station, Alameda, California.
Effective December 31, 1991, IAM "merged IAM Lodge 739 with another IAM local lodge [IAM Lodge 1584]." ARD's Decision at 2. The ARD found that, since the merger, IAM Lodge 1584 has been responsible for representing the employees in the bargaining unit. The merger "was implemented by IAM administratively and no election was held among employees in the bargaining unit concerning the change." Id. The ARD found that, since the merger, "[t]he change in local lodge representational responsibility has had no effect on the day-to-day representation of the bargaining unit[;] [t]he steward system remains intact[;] [and] [t]he IAM Grand Lodge continues to assign a Business Agent to assist the on-site unit employee stewards." Id. The ARD also found that, since the merger, "[t]he parties continue to follow the provisions of the collective bargaining agreement in effect prior to the change in local lodge representational responsibility." Id.
The ARD found that the proposed amendment to the name of the Activity was merely a nominal or technical change that accurately reflected the current name of the Activity and did not otherwise alter the nature and scope of the bargaining unit. Therefore, the ARD found that it was appropriate to amend the certification with respect to the name of the Activity and stated that she would grant the petition with respect to the proposed change in the name of the Activity. IAM does not seek review of the ARD's conclusion in that respect.
The ARD denied the proposed amendment of certification to change the name of the exclusive representative. The ARD stated that an exclusive representative which proposes to change affiliation must follow the procedures established in Veterans Administration Hospital, Montrose, New York, 4 A/SLMR 859 (1974), review denied, 3 FLRC 259 (1975) (Montrose), and specifically adopted by the Authority and applied to the merger involved in Florida National Guard, St. Augustine, Florida, 25 FLRA 728 (1987) (Florida National Guard I). As stated by the ARD, under Montrose, an exclusive representative which proposes to change affiliation is required to:
(1) hold a special meeting of the members of the organization with adequate notice to all members to discuss the proposed change; (2) hold the meeting at a time and place convenient to all members; (3) provide adequate time at the special meeting for discussion of the proposed change; and (4) take a secret ballot vote of the members of the organization, with the ballot clearly stating the change proposed.
ARD's Decision at 2.
The ARD stated that "[t]he purpose of the Montrose procedures is to ensure that the employees affected by a change in affiliation decide by the ballot box whether they wish to affiliate with a different labor organization." Id. at 3. The ARD found that although IAM "may determine administratively to merge local lodges, such as the merger involved in this case[,] . . . in order [to support a petition] to change the exclusive representative for the bargaining unit in this case to another IAM local lodge, it was necessary to follow the Montrose procedures." Id. (citations omitted).
The ARD found that the Montrose procedures were not followed in this case. The ARD noted that "[n]o special meeting of IAM Lodge 739 members was held to discuss the proposed change and no secret ballot vote was taken concerning the desires of the employees with respect to their exclusive representative." Id. Therefore, the ARD denied the proposed amendment of certification to change the name of the exclusive representative from IAM Lodge 739 to IAM Lodge 1584 and dismissed the petition in that respect.
III. Application for Review
IAM seeks review of the ARD's decision under section 2422.17 of the Authority's Regulations, alleging that: (1) substantial questions of law or policy are raised by the decision; (2) the decision is erroneous on a substantial factual issue and such error prejudicially affects the rights of IAM; and (3) extraordinary circumstances exist warranting reversal of the decision.
IAM "acknowledge[s] that [Florida National Guard I] may be relied on to support" the ARD's decision, but argues that, based on "practical reasons[,]" both Florida National Guard I and the ARD's decision should be reversed. Application at 2 n.1. IAM asserts that "[a]lthough technically correct, contrary to the [ARD's] conclusion, the change of a local lodge number does not constitute a real change in the exclusive bargaining representative." Id. at 3 (emphasis in original).
IAM contends, in essence, that the Montrose requirements should not be applied in the instant case and notes in this regard that "the contract, steward system, dues, and Constitution are all identical before and after the merger[.]" Id. at 4. IAM argues that "[a]n International Union, such as the IAM, must have the right to assign new local lodge numbers when under its Constitution circumstances warrant that a merger be accomplished to assure protection of the membership." Id. IAM states that its Executive Council determined "that the best interests of the members would be served by terminating IAM Local Lodge 739 and combining its members with those of IAM Local Lodge 1584[,]" pursuant to the authority granted by the IAM membership. Id. at n.2. According to IAM, "[a]s a practical matter, IAM Local Lodge 739 no longer exists and the Activity recognizes Local [Lodge] 1584 and labor relations are stable between the parties." Id. at 5.
IV. Analysis and Conclusions
We conclude, for the following reasons, that no compelling reasons exist within the meaning of section 2422.17(c) of the Authority's Rules and Regulations for granting IAM's application for review.
The ARD did not depart from Authority precedent. The ARD noted that IAM is free to make any changes it chooses internally in the designation of its local lodges. However, as the ARD correctly ruled, in order to amend the certification issued by the Authority to reflect a change in the designation of the exclusive representative for the bargaining unit in this case from IAM Lodge 739 to IAM Lodge 1584, it was necessary to follow the procedures required by Montrose. See Florida National Guard, St. Augustine, Florida, 34 FLRA 223 (1990) (Florida National Guard II); and Florida National Guard I. In Florida National Guard I, the Authority applied the Montrose procedures where two locals within the same national union merged, and in Florida National Guard II, the Authority applied the Montrose procedures where, as here, two locals within the same international union merged.
We find nothing in IAM's application to persuade us that the Montrose procedures should not be applied in this case. As stated in Montrose and Florida National Guard II, a reason for requiring the Montrose procedures is to ensure that an affiliation or merger conforms to the wishes of the membership of the certified exclusive representative involved in the change. In this case, it has not been demonstrated that the merger conforms to the wishes of the membership of IAM Lodge 739, the certified exclusive representative of the Activity's employees. IAM also asserts that the ARD's decision is erroneous on a substantial factual issue, but does not specify what factual error the ARD is alleged to have made, and none is apparent to us.
In sum, we find that IAM has not shown that a substantial question of law or policy has been raised by the ARD's decision and has not shown that the ARD's decision on any substantial factual issue was clearly erroneous and that such error prejudicially affected the rights of IAM. Moreover, IAM has not shown that extraordinary circumstances exist warranting review of the ARD's decision. Accordingly, IAM's disagreement with the ARD's ruling that the procedures of Montrose were necessary in this case, and with her conclusion that the petition to amend the name of the exclusive representative must be dismissed, does not warrant granting the application for review.
The application for review is denied.
(If blank, the decision does not have footnotes.)
*/ No hearing was held in this case. The ARD's findings were based on the investigative record in the case, including the parties' stipulation of facts.