Notice of Opportunity To Comment on a Request for a General Statement of Policy or Guidance on Revoking Union-Dues Assignments

 
CONTENT
Federal Register, Volume 84 Issue 134 (Friday, July 12, 2019)
[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 134 (Friday, July 12, 2019)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Page 33175]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-14651]
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Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________
This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.
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Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 134 / Friday, July 12, 2019 /
Proposed Rules
[[Page 33175]]
FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY
5 CFR Part 2427
[FLRA Docket No. 0-PS-34]
Notice of Opportunity To Comment on a Request for a General
Statement of Policy or Guidance on Revoking Union-Dues Assignments
AGENCY: Federal Labor Relations Authority.
ACTION: Request for comments.
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SUMMARY: The Federal Labor Relations Authority (Authority) solicits
written comments on a request from the Office of Personnel Management
(OPM) for a general statement of policy or guidance. OPM asks the
Authority to issue a general statement of policy or guidance holding
that the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Janus v. AFSCME, Council 31
(2018) requires the Authority to reevaluate its precedent on the
revocation of federal employees' union-dues assignments. Comments are
solicited on whether the Authority should issue a general statement of
policy or guidance, and, if so, what the Authority's policy or guidance
should be.
DATES: To be considered, comments must be received on or before August
12, 2019.
ADDRESSES: You may send comments, which must include the caption
``Office of Personnel Management (Petitioner), Case No. 0-PS-34,'' by
one of the following methods:
     Email: [email protected] Include ``OPM (Petitioner),
Case No. 0-PS-34'' in the subject line of the message..
     Mail or Hand Delivery: Emily Sloop, Chief, Case Intake and
Publication, Federal Labor Relations Authority, Docket Room, Suite 200,
1400 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20424-0001.
    Instructions: It is not necessary to mail or hand deliver written
comments if they have been submitted via email. Interested persons who
mail or hand deliver written comments must submit an original and 4
copies of each written comment, with any enclosures, on 8\1/2\ x 11
inch paper.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Emily Sloop, Chief, Case Intake and
Publication, Federal Labor Relations Authority, (202) 218-7740.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In Case No. 0-PS-34, OPM requests that the
Authority issue a general statement of policy or guidance concerning
the interpretation of 5 U.S.C. 7115(a), considering the First Amendment
principles that the U.S. Supreme Court clarified in Janus v. AFSCME,
Council 31, 138 S. Ct. 2448 (2018). Interested persons are invited to
express their views in writing as to whether the Authority should issue
a general statement and, if it does, what the Authority's policy or
guidance should be.
Request for Comments
    To Heads of Agencies, Presidents of Labor Organizations, and Other
Interested Persons:
    OPM has requested, under Section 2427.2(a) of the Authority's rules
and regulations (5 CFR 2427.2(a)), that the Authority issue a general
statement of policy or guidance on the applicability of the First
Amendment principles that the U.S. Supreme Court clarified in Janus v.
AFSCME, Council 31, 138 S. Ct. 2448 (2018), to the revocation of
federal employees' union-dues assignments under Section 7115(a) of the
Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute).
Section 7115(a) states, in pertinent part, that ``[i]f an agency has
received from an employee in an appropriate unit a written assignment
which authorizes the agency to deduct from the pay of the employee
amounts for the payment of regular and periodic dues of the exclusive
representative of the unit, the agency shall honor the assignment and
make an appropriate allotment pursuant to the assignment.'' The section
further provides that, with certain exceptions, ``any such assignment
may not be revoked for a period of 1 year.''
    Since its decision in U.S. Army, U.S. Army Materiel Development &
Readiness Command, Warren, Michigan, 7 FLRA 194 (1981), the Authority
has held that the wording in Section 7115(a) that `` `any such
assignment may not be revoked for a period of 1 year' must be
interpreted to mean that authorized dues allotments may be revoked only
at intervals of 1 year.'' 7 FLRA at 199. The Authority has also held
that ``parties may define through negotiations the procedures for
implementing'' Section 7115, as long as those negotiated procedures
preserve employees' freedoms to have dues deducted from their pay and
to revoke their dues assignments at one-year intervals. AFGE, AFL-CIO,
51 FLRA 1427, 1432-37 (1996).
    In its request, OPM asks the Authority to issue a general statement
of policy or guidance holding that:
    1. The constitutional principles clarified in Janus have general
applicability to agencies and labor organizations in the area of
federal employees' requests to revoke union-dues assignments under
Section 7115(a) of the Statute; and
    2. Consistent with Janus, upon receiving an employee's request to
revoke a previously authorized union-dues assignment, an agency should
process the request as soon as administratively feasible, if at least
one year has passed since the employee initially authorized union-dues
assignment from the employee's pay.
    Regarding the matters raised by OPM, the Authority invites written
comments on whether issuance of a general statement of policy or
guidance is warranted, under the standards set forth in Section 2427.5
of the Authority's rules and regulations (5 CFR 2427.5), and, if so,
what the Authority's policy or guidance should be. Written comments
must contain separate, numbered headings for each issue covered.
     Dated: July 3, 2019.
Emily Sloop,
Chief, Case Intake and Publication.
[FR Doc. 2019-14651 Filed 7-11-19; 8:45 am]
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