|NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD|
|Washington, D.C. 20572
December 30, 1999
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD
Re: United Transportation Union (UTU) and Union Pacific Railroad Employees
[The National Mediation Board sent the following communication to the United Transportation Union, AFL-CIO, Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, AFL-CIO and the Union Pacific Railroad Company concerning the alleged representation dispute involving employees of the carrier]
The United Transportation Union (UTU) filed an application on January 12, 1998, requesting the investigation of an alleged representation dispute involving personnel described as "Train and Engine Service Employees" of the Union Pacific Railroad Company. (UP). That application was assigned NMB File No. CR-6624.
On January 27, 1998, the UTU submitted a letter seeking to invoke the Board's Procedures for Handling Representation Issues Resulting from Mergers, Acquisitions or Consolidations in the Railroad Industry), 17 NMB 44 (1989). (Railroad Merger Procedures).
The BLE opposed the UTU application for numerous reasons set forth in the pleadings filed with the Board.
Pursuant to a Notice of Hearing issued on May 16, 1999, a hearing in this matter was conducted before Senior Hearing Officer Benetta M. Mansfield(1) on July 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10, 1999. Numerous witnesses testified and a substantial quantity of documents were received into evidence. Initial post-hearing submissions were received on August 2, 1999, and reply submissions were received on August 9, 1999.
Whether Train and Engine Service Employees is the proper craft or class at this Carrier and whether the UTU has properly invoked the Board's Railroad Merger Procedures.
III. REFERRAL TO PANEL
After reviewing the record in this case, the Board has determined to refer resolution of the issues noted above to a three-member Panel of prominent labor relations professionals. This referral is consistent with the Board's statutory authority provided by Section 2, Ninth of the Railway Labor Act, 45 U.S.C. § 152, Ninth.
Subsequent to this Notice, the Board will notify the BLE, UTU and UP of the Panel's composition. The Board will provide the Panel with the record in this case, and the Panel immediately will begin considering the record.
The Panel may, in its discretion, hold a hearing consistent with the timetable outlined below. The Panel is delegated the authority to provide for the proper and expeditious conduct of this proceeding, including the date, time, place, length and format of any hearing. The Board will provide the Panel, upon request, with clerical support and a court reporter.
The Board suggests, but does not require, that the BLE and UTU resume voluntary discussions to resolve this dispute through mutual agreement. To that end, the Board commends the use of Thomas J. Donahue or such other neutral facilitator as the BLE and UTU may agree. In order to allow these discussions to occur, the Board will defer action on this matter for the time specified below. BLE and UTU, separately, should advise the Board, in writing, by no later than 3:00 p.m. on January 10, 2000, whether the respective organizations will engage in voluntary discussions; all dates each organization is available for meetings; and the steps taken to retain a neutral facilitator.
Irrespective of whether the BLE and UTU resume discussions or fail to resume discussions, reach agreement or fail to reach agreement, the Panel is directed to prepare a decision and order by the date specified below.
If either BLE or UTU declines to engage in voluntary discussions to resolve this dispute, the Board will advise the Panel and request the Panel to conduct a hearing, in its discretion, and prepare a decision and order at its earliest convenience, but no later than March 1, 2000. Otherwise, the Panel shall prepare a decision and order by no later than March 29, 2000, ninety days after the date of this Notice.
By direction of the NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD.
Stephen E. Crable
1. Ms. Mansfield was assisted by Mediator Richard Hanusz.
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