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American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1923 (Union) and United States Department of Health and Human Services, Center For Medicare and Medicaid Services (Agency)

[ v57 p675 ]

57 FLRA No. 133

AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 1923
(Union)

and

UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
CENTER FOR MEDICARE AND
MEDICAID SERVICES
(Agency)

0-AR-3470

_____

DECISION

January 10, 2002

_____

Before the Authority: Dale Cabaniss, Chairman and
Carol Waller Pope and Tony Armendariz, Members

      This matter is before the Authority on exceptions to an award of Arbitrator Jerome H. Ross filed by the Union under § 7122(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and part 2425 of the Authority's Regulations. The Agency filed an opposition to the Union's exceptions.

      Under § 7122(a) of the Statute, an award is deficient if it is contrary to any law, rule, or regulation; or it is deficient on other grounds similar to those applied by Federal courts in private sector labor-management relations. Upon careful consideration of the entire record in this case, and Authority precedent, the Authority concludes that the award is not deficient on the grounds raised in the exceptions and set forth in § 7122(a). See AFGE, Local 4044, Council of Prisons Local 33, 57 FLRA 98, 99 (2001) (in the absence of a stipulation by the parties, arbitrator's formulation of the issue is accorded substantial deference); National Air Traffic Controllers Association, 55 FLRA 1025, 1027 (1999) (Member Wasserman dissenting on other grounds) (award not deficient as incomplete, ambiguous or contradictory where excepting party fails to establish that implementation of the award is impossible); [n1] AFGE, Local 940, 52 FLRA 1429, 1433 (1997) (arbitrator's interpretation of contractual provision governing negotiation process drew its essence from parties' agreement); United States Dep't of Labor (OSHA), 34 FLRA 573, 575 (1990) (award not deficient as failing to draw its essence from the parties' collective bargaining agreement where excepting party fails to establish that the award cannot in any rational way be derived from the agreement; is so unfounded in reason and fact and so unconnected to the wording and purpose of the agreement as to manifest an infidelity to the obligation of the arbitrator; does not represent a plausible interpretation of the agreement; or evidences a manifest disregard of the agreement).

      Accordingly, the Union's exceptions are denied.



Footnote # 1 for 57 FLRA No. 133

   In this regard, we note that the award allows the parties to bargain on all subjects raised by either party, once automatic renewal of their master agreement has been precluded.