After the post-filing conference: the agency's statement of position
After the post-filing conference is held, the agency files its statement of position. This must be filed within 30 days of the agency head's receipt of the union's petition for review, unless the Authority or its representative has granted an extension of time. The agency may use a pre-printed form provided by the Authority's Office of Case Intake and Publication, or it may use plain paper and provide the same information that is requested on the form. Again, using the form may be the best way to ensure that the agency provides all the information that is needed. If the agency doesn't provide everything that is required under the regulations, the Authority could issue a bargaining order or order the agency head to withdraw its disapproval.
The statement of position is designed to give the agency a chance to explain its reasons why the contract language - either a proposal or a provision - is illegal or outside the obligation to bargain. The agency must state what it views as the meaning or impact of the contract language, if it disagrees with the union's statement as to meaning or impact. It is required to set out all of the reasons it has for stating that the contract language is non-negotiable, such as management rights or inconsistency with law or regulation. If the agency disagrees with the union's request for severance, or if it thinks severance is proper, it should give all the reasons for its position. The agency must mail or deliver its statement of position to the union representative.