20:0684(78)AR - SSA and AFGE Local 1923 -- 1985 FLRAdec AR



[ v20 p684 ]
20:0684(78)AR
The decision of the Authority follows:


 20 FLRA No. 78
 
 SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
 Agency
 
 and
 
 AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT 
 EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 1923
 Union
 
                                            Case No. 0-AR-1002
 
                                 DECISION
 
    This matter is before the Authority on an exception to the award of
 Arbitrator James C. Oldham filed by the Agency under section 7122(a) of
 the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute and part 2425 of
 the Authority's Rules and Regulations.
 
    The Arbitrator determined that the grievant had been temporarily
 assigned to a position of higher grade from October 25, 1981, until
 March 1984, and that under the express terms of the parties' collective
 bargaining agreement, she was entitled to a temporary promotion
 effective the first day of the assignment.  Accordingly, he awarded the
 grievant a retroactive temporary promotion and backpay from October 25,
 1981, until the day in March 1984 that she returned to her original
 position.
 
    In its exception the Agency contends that the award, in part, is
 contrary to the Back Pay Act, 5 U.S.C. Sec. 5596.  Specifically, the
 Agency maintains that the parties' collective bargaining agreement on
 which the Arbitrator based his award did not become effective until June
 11, 1982.  Thus, the Agency argues that there is no basis under the Back
 Pay Act for the award of retroactive promotion and backpay for the
 period from October 25, 1981, to June 10, 1982.  The Authority agrees.
 
    The Authority has clearly indicated with respect to assignments of
 the duties of, or details to, a higher-grade position for an extended
 period of time that absent a collective bargaining agreement provision
 or agency regulation mandating a temporary promotion in such
 circumstances, an award by an arbitrator of a retroactive temporary
 promotion and backpay is not authorized for such extended assignments or
 details.  Veterans Administration Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee
 and American Federation of Government Employees, Local No. 2400, 19 FLRA
 No. 46 (1985);  Health Care Financing Administration and American
 Federation of Government Employees, Local 1923, AFL-CIO, 17 FLRA No. 88
 (1985);  U.S. Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization
 Service and National Immigration and Naturalization Service Council,
 American Federation of Government Employees, Local 2805, 15 FLRA No. 163
 (1984).  In particular, in VA Medical Center, Nashville, the grievant
 had been detailed to a higher-grade position from January 1980, to March
 22, 1983.  Under the express terms of the parties' collective bargaining
 agreement, which was effective August 13, 1982, the activity had granted
 the grievant a retroactive tempor