770 F.2d 1223 (D.C. Cir. 1985), 84-1242, National Ass'n of Government Employees, Local R7-23 v. Federal Labor Relations Authority

Docket Nº:84-1242.
Citation:770 F.2d 1223
Party Name:NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, LOCAL R7-23, Petitioner, v. FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY, Respondent.
Case Date:September 03, 1985
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
 
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Page 1223

770 F.2d 1223 (D.C. Cir. 1985)

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, LOCAL R7-23, Petitioner,

v.

FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY, Respondent.

No. 84-1242.

United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit

September 3, 1985

Argued May 7, 1985.

Petition for Review of an Order of the Federal Labor Relations authority.

Gordon P. Ramsey, Boston, Mass., for petitioner.

Robert J. Englehart, Atty., Federal Labor Relations Authority, Washington, D.C., with whom Ruth E. Peters, Sol., Steven H. Svartz, Deputy Sol., and William E. Persina, Associate Sol., Federal Labor Relations Authority, Washington, D.C., were on the brief, for respondent.

Before EDWARDS, SCALIA and STARR, Circuit Judges.

Opinion for the Court filed by Circuit Judge SCALIA.

SCALIA, Circuit Judge:

This petition arises out of unfair labor practice proceedings under the Federal Service

Page 1224

Labor-Management Relations statute, 5 U.S.C. Secs. 7101-35 (1982). The National Association of Government Employees, Local R7-23 ("NAGE") seeks review of a Federal Labor Relations Authority decision involving the Department of the Air Force, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois. The Authority concluded that the agency did not interfere with statutorily guaranteed union rights in evaluating an employee's performance and in requesting the employee to devote more time to job-related work. The issue presented for review is whether this conclusion was arbitrary or capricious.

I

Carl Denton has been a Computer Systems Analyst at Scott Air Force Base since 1973. In 1978, he was elected president of NAGE Local R7-23, the union representing all of the 3,000 civilian employees at the base. Since then, he has been an "active" and "visible" union advocate. Under the collective bargaining agreement in effect between the union and the base, Denton was entitled to a "reasonable" amount of official time to conduct union representational activities. These activities took up a substantial portion of his work week--between 47 percent and 92 percent during the period from May 1978 through January 1980. The remainder of his 40-hour work week was spent at his computer-analyst duties.

In May 1979, Denton was appointed to a new position--Quality Assurance Manager for the Consolidated Aerial Port Subsystems project ("CAPS"). In this position, he was expected to coordinate periodic audits of the CAPS program. In September 1979, in his capacity as union president, Denton began negotiations with the base to conclude a collective bargaining agreement. Negotiations were regularly scheduled for Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. These continued through January 1980. During that last month, an important CAPS audit was scheduled, in which Denton, as audit manager, was expected to play an important role. On January 16, Captain Dennis Hohman, Denton's first-line supervisor, requested Denton to delay or reschedule contract negotiations. Denton refused and said the discussion was making him very "nervous" and "sick." He thereafter took sick leave for the next two days and filed a claim of traumatic injury. (The claim was later...

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