PERC Examiner Dismisses Renton Police Officers’ Guild’s Unfair Labor Practice Complaint Over Compensation For Bicycle Officers, Finding Guild Already Knew About The Change

By Chris Casillas and Sarah E. Derry

In City of Renton, PERC Examiner Coss dismissed the Renton Police Officers’ Guild’s Unfair Labor Practice complaint, which challenged the pay scheme for bicycle officers. The Examiner held that, contrary to the Guild’s allegations: (1) the City did not engage in direct dealing with Officers when it created a new payment method; (2) the Guild had actually agreed to end the alternate payment method and so the City did not unilaterally change the bike pay; and (3) the Guild’s complaint was barred by the statute of limitations.

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PERC Holds That Millwright Union Committed A Unfair Labor Practice When It Submitted A Permissive Subject Of Bargaining To Interest Arbitration

By: Jordan L. Jones

bus-stop-transit-blue-clip-artIn King County (Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 587), PERC held that ATU Local 587 committed a ULP when it submitted a permissive subject of bargaining to interest arbitration. Examiner De La Rosa found that King County’s decision to move the Millwrights from the Vehicle Maintenance Section to the Power & Facilities Section was a managerial prerogative and therefore a permissive subject of bargaining.

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Commission Upends Thirty Years of Law in Recent Ruling Finding Inland Boatmen’s Union Did Not Refuse to Bargain

By Chris Casillas and Jordan L. Jones

Impasse-ChessIn Washington State Ferries, the Commission affirmed Examiner Slone-Gomez’s decision that the Inland Boatmen’s Union of the Pacific did not refuse to bargain in violation of RCW 47.64.130(2)(c). The Commission stated that the Washington State Ferries was unable to prove that the Union negotiated to impasse on a non-mandatory subject of bargaining.

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PERC Reverses Examiner, Holds Kitsap County Did Not Bargain In Bad Faith

By Chris Casillas and Sarah Derry

procurement rulesIn Kitsap County, PERC overturned Examiner Ramerman’s decision that Kitsap County engaged in bad faith bargaining.  The Commission considered two separate issues: (1) whether to consider Kitsap County’s brief even though it was submitted late; and (2) whether Kitsap County breached its duty to bargain in good faith with the Juvenile Detention Officers’ Guild. On the first issue, the Commission refused to consider the employer’s late brief, emphasizing that its procedural rules are to be followed in every case.  PERC characterized the late-filing as acting “in complete disregard of our procedural rules” and that it had “previously cautioned the employer that it disregards the Commission’s rules at its own peril.”

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PERC Holds that Warden School District Did Not Commit A ULP When It Did Not Bargain With the Union Over Whether to Change the School Calendar and that Principal’s Statement to Employee Was Not Interference With Union Rights

By Chris Casillas and Sarah Derry

crystal ballIn Warden School District, PERC Examiner Whitney considered two unrelated issues:  First, the employer did not commit a ULP by not bargaining with the union over whether to adopt a perpetual calendar for the school year. Examiner Whitney found that: (1) the employer had been using the same calendar adoption process for nine years, so there was no change, and (2) although the union wanted to adopt a “perpetual calendar,” the Union never directly proposed it, so the school district did not refuse to bargain. Second, Examiner Whitney determined that the school district did not interfere with a teacher’s union rights by threatening to fire him if he did not take on another class, in part because another teacher testified that she did not think the complaining teacher had been threatened.

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PERC Holds that Kitsap County Failed to Bargain in Good Faith After it “Effectively Hamstrung” Employer Representatives with Insufficient Authority at the Bargaining Table

By Chris Casillas and Jordan L. Jones

kitsap hogtiedIn Kitsap County, PERC Examiner Dianne Ramerman held that the Employer “failed to bargain in good faith and committed a ULP in violation of RCW 41.56.140(4) and derivatively interfered with employee rights in violation of RCW 41.56.140(1).” Examiner Ramerman found that Kitsap County’s “representatives at the table [with the Kitsap County Juvenile Detention Officers’ Guild] did not have sufficient authority to engage in meaningful bargaining.” Specifically, Examiner Ramerman found that Kitsap County’s representatives at the table were:

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PERC finds Deputy Sheriff’s Association Bargained Regressively on Eve of Interest Arbitration

By Therese Norton

MaliceBoth employer and union can violate their good faith bargaining obligations under the state collective bargaining laws when one party advances proposals prior to interest arbitration that are regressive from proposals made earlier in negotiations. In Spokane County (Spokane County Deputy Sheriff’s Association), PERC Examiner Stephen W. Irvin found, and the Commission affirmed, that the Spokane County Deputy Sheriff’s Association breached its good faith bargaining obligations by submitting a regressive wage proposal after impasse and shortly before the parties’ scheduled interest arbitration hearing.

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PERC Affirms Ruling Union Improperly Circumvented Employer’s Designated Collective Bargaining Rep

By Therese Norton

bargaining 2In Kiona Benton School District, the Public Employee Relations Commission affirmed Examiner Coss’s finding that the Kiona Benton Education Association, the Union that represents certain teachers in the School District, breached its good faith bargaining obligation under State collective bargaining laws by refusing to communicate with the District’s designated collective bargaining representatives.

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PERC Reverses Examiner and Finds WSU Engaged in Bad Faith Bargaining with Roofers Union

By Therese Norton

In Washington State University, the Public Employment Relations Commission upheld an appeal by a union that WSU committed an unfair labor practice, reversing the Hearing Examiner. The union alleged that WSU unlawfully contracted out a roof repair project and breached its good faith bargaining obligation in the manner in which the employer invoked a contractual time limit for bargaining. With one Commissioner absent, the divided remaining two commissioners were split on the “skimming” charge, so the Examiner decision that no skimming occurred stands.  But, the Commission determined that 13 other pending bargaining demands were improperly ignored by WSU.

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PERC Examiner Finds that Union’s Refusal to Communicate with Employer’s Designated Collective Bargaining Rep is a ULP

By Therese Norton

Both unions and employers have the right to designate who represents them in the collective bargaining process. In Kiona Benton School District, PERC Hearing Examiner Guy Coss ruled, without a hearing, after a motion for “summary judgment”, that the Kiona Benton Education Association breached its duty to bargain in good faith by refusing to bargain with the School District’s designated collective bargaining representatives.

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