Administrative Services

EMPLOYEE RELATIONS

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Arbitration Decision Summary

The following Arbitration Decisions regarding employee grievances have been summarized for informational use only. Please be advised that none of the decisions in any of these cases are precedent setting.

2000-01

Deborah Smith v. Department of Correctional Services #4. (NAPE - 10.1) Deborah Smith filed a grievance when the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) imposed a six-month disciplinary probation. The parties mutually agreed to have Paul Caffera serve as Arbitrator. The Respondent alleged that the Appellant was abusing sick leave, while the Appellant claimed it was not abuse since none of the occurrences of sick leave use were challenged. The six-month probation was reduced to a written warning during the grievance process, but the Appellant continued the appeal.

The Arbitrator found the Appellant's use of sick leave to be excessive and the pattern of its use to be abusive toward the employer. In the five years the Appellant has been employed by DCS, she had earned over 500 hours of sick leave, but at the time of this hearing, she had only 10 hours on the books. In the three-year period of 1997 to 1999, she accumulated 326 hours and used 341. The Arbitrator determined that the Agency has just cause and acted in good faith when imposing the disciplinary action. The grievance was denied.

James Smith v. Department of Roads. (NAPE - 10.1) James Smith filed a grievance when the Department of Roads placed a written warning in his personnel file. The parties mutually agreed to have Paul Caffera serve as Arbitrator to rule on a Motion to Dismiss filed by the Respondent. In the motion, the Respondent alleged that the Appellant failed to file the Step 3 appeal to the DAS-Employee Relations Administrator within the contractually agreed timelines.

The Arbitrator found that the Appellant did fail to file a step 3 appeal within the 15-days allowed by the labor contract. The Arbitrator ruled that this was a violation of the negotiated time limits and therefore, dismissed the appeal.

Kevin Harrom v. Department of Administrative Services. (NAPE - 9.1) Kevin Harrom filed a grievance when he was not offered a position within the Department of Administrative Services. The parties mutually agreed to have Sharon Imes serve as Arbitrator to rule on a Motion to Dismiss filed by the Respondent.  In the motion, the Respondent alleged that the Appellant failed to file the original appeal within the contractually agreed timelines at the first step.

The Arbitrator found that the Appellant did not file the original appeal within the 15-days allowed by the labor contract after he was made aware of the situation. The Arbitrator ruled that this was a violation of the labor contract and therefore, the appeal was dismissed.

Susan Green v. Department of Health and Human Services. (NAPE - 9.5 & 18.2) Susan Green filed a grievance when the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) transferred employees from one work area to another within the same facility. The parties mutually agreed to have Joseph Logan serve as Arbitrator. The Appellant alleged that the transfer and the manner in which it was accomplished, was a violation, and created an unsafe work environment.  The Respondent's position was that each unit at the facility is a separate entity and the transfers were made to maintain specific coverage with the change in patient population.

The Arbitrator found that each area of the facility was unique and required specific staffing.  The Respondent did request volunteers in compliance with the labor contract, and the actual transfers were initiated within the proper language of the contract.  The Arbitrator also found that the transfers did not create an unsafe work environment, and there had been no violation.  The decision of the Arbitrator was to deny the grievance and that the action of the Respondent be affirmed.

Laurie Reinsch v. Department of Correctional Services. and Kimberly Mundil v. Department of Correctional Services. (NAPE - 7.9) Laurie Reinsch and Kimberly Mundil each filed a grievance when the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) refused to pay for on-call status when the Appellants served as Mental Health Officer of the Day (MHOD). The parties mutually agreed to have Paul Caffera serve as Arbitrator. The Appellants claimed to be entitled to on-call pay during the period serving as MHOD, during which time phone calls are received at home.  The Agency argued that the duty of MHOD has been in operation since 1984, and it has never been recognized as an "on-call" position according to the labor contract.

The Arbitrator found that no MHOD has ever received compensation from the Respondent in over 15 years, and that according to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the Appellants do not meet the requirements for on-call status.  The Labor Contract provides for compensation to certain employees under limited circumstances for 0n-call/standby, but the position of MHOD is not included in this section of the agreement.  The Arbitrator ordered the grievances denied and dismissed.