U.S. Department of the Air Force, Air Force Logistics Command, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio




[ v01 p217 ]
01:0217(27)UC
The decision of the Authority follows:


 1 FLRA No. 27
                                            APRIL 27, 1979
 
 MR. JAMES L. NEUSTADT
 ASSISTANT GENERAL COUNSEL
 AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
 EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO
 1325 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, N.W.
 WASHINGTON, D.C.  20005
 
 MR. VAL BUXTON, CHIEF
 LABOR AND EMPLOYEE RELATIONS DIVISION
 DIRECTORATE OF CIVILIAN PERSONNEL
 DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE
 AIR FORCE LOGISTICS COMMAND
 WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, OHIO 45433
 
                    RE:  U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE, AIR FORCE 
                         LOGISTICS COMMAND, WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, 
                         OHIO, Assistant Secretary Case 
                         No. 53-10572(UC), FLRC No. 78A-177
 
 GENTLEMEN:
 
    THE AUTHORITY HAS CAREFULLY CONSIDERED YOUR JOINT PETITION FOR REVIEW
 OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY'S DECISION IN THE ABOVE-ENTITLED CASE.
 
    THIS CASE AROSE AS A RESULT OF A PETITION FILED JOINTLY BY THE
 AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, AFL-CIO (THE UNION) AND THE
 AIR FORCE LOGISTICS COMMAND (THE ACTIVITY) SEEKING TO CONSOLIDATE TWO
 UNITS EXCLUSIVELY REPRESENTED BY THE UNION.  ONE OF THE UNITS CONSISTED
 OF ALL NONSUPERVISORY, NONPROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES AT NINE FACILITIES OF
 THE ACTIVITY, AND THE SECOND CONSISTED OF ALL PROFESSIONAL NURSES AT TWO
 OF THE SAME FACILITIES.  NEITHER THE PARTIES NOR THE EMPLOYEES IN THE
 PROPOSED UNIT SOUGHT AN ELECTION ON THE ISSUE OF THE PROPOSED
 CONSOLIDATION.
 
    THE REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR (RA), CITING THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS
 COUNCIL'S 1975 REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS ON THE AMENDMENT OF EXECUTIVE
 ORDER 11491, /1/ FOUND THAT THE ORDER SPECIFICALLY REQUIRES AN ELECTION
 AMONG PROFESSIONALS IN EVERY CASE WHERE A CONSOLIDATION OF UNITS WOULD
 MIX BOTH PROFESSIONAL AND NONPROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES, AND THAT NO
 DISTINCTION IS MADE AS TO THE SIZE OF THE UNITS BEING CONSOLIDATED, NOR
 HAS ANY EXCEPTION BEEN MADE WHEN AN ELECTION WAS RECENTLY HELD ON THE
 SAME ISSUE IN ONE OF THE UNITS SOUGHT TO BE CONSOLIDATED IN THE PROPOSED
 CONSOLIDATION.  ACCORDINGLY, HE FOUND THAT "AN ELECTION AMONG (THE)
 PROFESSIONALS RESOLVING THE ISSUE OF THEIR INCLUSION OR EXCLUSION FROM
 THE PROPOSED CONSOLIDATED UNIT IS A NECESSARY PART IN THE PROCESS OF
 COMPLETING THE CERTIFICATION OF THE PROPOSED CONSOLIDATED UNIT." HE
 FURTHER FOUND, HOWEVER, THAT THE JOINT PETITIONERS HAD BEEN INFORMED OF
 SUCH REQUIREMENTS BUT REFUSED TO PROCEED TO AN ELECTION AMONG THE
 PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES.  HE THEREFORE DISMISSED THE JOINT PETITION.  THE
 ASSISTANT SECRETARY, IN AGREEMENT WITH THE RA AND BASED ON HIS
 REASONING, FOUND THAT DISMISSAL OF THE INSTANT PETITION WAS WARRANTED
 AND ACCORDINGLY DENIED THE PARTIES' REQUESTS FOR REVIEW SEEKING REVERSAL
 OF THE RA'S DISMISSAL OF THE PETITION.
 
    IN THE JOINT PETITION FOR REVIEW, IT IS ALLEGED THAT THE ASSISTANT
 SECRETARY'S DECISION RAISES THE FOLLOWING MAJOR POLICY ISSUE:
 
    "(W)HETHER IN EVERY PROPOSED CONSOLIDATION INVOLVING MIXED
 PROFESSIONAL AND
 
    NON-PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES SHOULD SELF-DETERMINATION ELECTIONS FOR
 THE PROFESSIONALS BE
 
    REQUIRED, OR SHOULD SUCH ELECTIONS BE HELD ONLY IN ACCORDANCE WITH
 RATIONAL CRITERIA
 
    CONSISTENT WITH THE POLICY TO FACILITATE UNIT CONSOLIDATION AS
 PROVIDED FOR IN THE COUNCIL'S
 
    REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS ON THE AMENDMENT OF EXECUTIVE ORDER 11491,
 JANUARY 1975?"
 
    IN THIS REGARD, IT IS CONTENDED THAT A MINIMUM ONE-YEAR BAR SHOULD BE
 IMPLEMENTED PRECLUDING A VOTE AMONG PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYEES "FOR THE TIME
 PERIOD BETWEEN THE PROFESSIONAL VOTE FOR A PREVIOUS CONSOLIDATION AND A
 SUCCEEDING PETITION FOR CONSOLIDATION WHICH INCLUDES THE PREVIOUS
 CONSOLIDATED UNIT."
 
    IN THE AUTHORITY'S OPINION, THE PETITION FOR REVIEW OF THE ASSISTANT
 SECRETARY'S DECISION DOES NOT MEET THE REQUIREMENTS OF SECTION 2400.2 OF
 THE AUTHORITY'S TRANSITION RULES WHICH INCORPORATES BY REFERENCE SECTION
 2411.12 OF THE COUNCIL'S RULES.  THAT IS, THE DECISION OF THE ASSISTANT
 SECRETARY DOES NOT PRESENT A MAJOR POLICY ISSUE AND IT IS NEITHER
 ALLEGED, NOR DOES IT APPEAR, THAT HIS DECISION IS ARBITRARY AND
 CAPRICIOUS.
 
    THUS, AS TO THE ALLEGATION THAT THE ASSI