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WASHINGTON-The National Treasury Employees Union, representing NCUA employees, filed unfair labor practice (ULP) charges with the Federal Labor Relations Authority Oct. 27 against the agency for “stalling and resisting” efforts to reach an agreement on a labor contract. NCUA did not have much to say on the matter. “We are available and prepared to meet with NTEU to negotiate a comprehensive collective bargaining agreement that will benefit both the agency and its employees,” NCUA Executive Director Len Skiles said. NCUA employees voted in June to form Chapter 303 of NTEU to represent about 740 agency employees. “By their vote this summer,” NTEU President Colleen Kelley said, “NCUA employees made it clear they want a say in the personnel decisions affecting them, along with a professional, collective voice to help protect them from arbitrary treatment by managers.” NTEU filed the ULP stating that NCUA has violated its obligation not to “interfere, restrain or coerce any employee in the exercise of any rights” under Title 5, Sec. 7116 of the U.S. Code, and that it not “refuse to consult or negotiate in good faith.” Chapter 71 of Title 5 governs federal sector labor relations. Specifically, according to NTEU Chapter 303′s newsletter for October 2004, the union charged NCUA has: 1. Sought to get the union to withdraw its request to bargain over certain mandatory subjects of negotiations; 2. Refused to provide the union requested information to assist in negotiations and the preparations of grievances; 3. Submitted “unreasonable demands” showing that NCUA intends to only surface bargain and utilize delay tactics; 4. Refused to negotiate simultaneously over multiple mandatory subjects of bargaining; 5. Insisted the union not place any agreements in a formal contract; 6. Insisted the contract not be for a specific term; 7. Refused to recognize the union’s right to have the members vote to approve the contract; 8. Refused to conform the agency’s existing grievance procedure to the requirements of the law; 9. Refused to submit any agreement reached at the table to the agency head for approval as required by law; 10. Refused to process the dues authorization form (SF-1187s) in a timely manner; 11. Implemented Personnel Change 19 on the day of the election, which is a condition of employment regarding hours of work; and 12. Failed to provide reasonable notice of formal meetings to the union. “By failing to negotiate an agreement containing even basic rights for employees, the agency is refusing to meet its obligations under federal labor law,” Kelley said. She claimed, “NTEU has been attempting to engage in bargaining with NCUA since we won the election and those efforts have been met with strong resistance and obvious stalling tactics on the part of NCUA.” NTEU submitted formal bargaining proposals to the agency in August, including binding third-party arbitration as the final step for employee grievances; expanding the scope of matters subject to the grievance procedure; establishing rules for negotiating all future agreements, including an agreement concerning performance and promotion systems, leave rights, discipline procedures and reassignment rights; and installing a system of local representatives in the workplace. The union filed the ULP with the FLRA and has appealed the agency’s actions to the Federal Service Impasses Panel, which includes seven presidential appointees to resolve impasses between federal agencies and unions arising from negotiations over conditions of employment. In addition to its multiple requests to NCUA under the Freedom of Information Act for data the agency is obligated to provide, NTEU previously sought the services of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service in this matter, which performs dispute resolution and conflict management services. According to the Chapter 303 newsletter for October 2004, “NCUA has proposed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that is not a collective bargaining agreement.” NCUA left the term of the MOU open-ended until an interim agreement is reached, the newsletter stated, while NTEU wants a two-year agreement to be renewed annually after that. NCUA also offered one steward per 100 represented employees while NTEU wants one per 40, according to the newsletter. NTEU represents 150,000 employees in 30 federal agencies and departments. [email protected]

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