April 1, 2002
Mr. Richard P. Magurno
Sr. Vice President & General Counsel
AirTran Airways, Inc.
9955 AirTran Boulevard
Orlando, FL 32827
David M. Brown, Esq.
David A. Hoffman, Esq.
Counsel for AirTran Airways
Smith, Gambrell & Russell, LLP
1230 Peachtree Street, N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30309
Mr. Ray Benning, Director
National Airline Division
International Brotherhood of Teamsters
6242 Westchester Parkway Suite 250
Los Angeles, CA 90045
Roland P. Wilder, Jr., Esq.
Baptiste & Wilder, P.C.
1150 Connecticut Ave., NW.
Washington, DC 20036
Mr. John Mays, Bus. Agent
Teamsters Local Union 528
2540 Lakewood Ave., SW.
Atlanta, GA 30315
Re: NMB Case No. R-6852
AirTran Airways, Inc.
This determination addresses the November 9, 2001, Motion for Reconsideration filed by AirTran Airways (AirTran or Carrier). AirTran seeks reconsideration of the National Mediation Board's (Board) November 5, 2001, decision finding that the Carrier's Line Maintenance Supervisors are not management officials and are part of the craft or class of Mechanics and Related Employees. AirTran Airways, Inc., 29 NMB 77 (2001). AirTran's Mechanics and Related Employees are currently represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT).
The IBT filed a response in opposition to the Carrier's Motion on December 5, 2001, and AirTran filed a reply on December 21, 2001.
For the reasons discussed below, the Board grants reconsideration but denies relief.
The Carrier argues that the Board failed to consider "the entire facts and evidence regarding the managerial authority of AirTran's Maintenance Supervisors." According to AirTran, its Maintenance Supervisors are management officials.
AirTran asserts that the declarations from five maintenance supervisors, provided by the IBT, were "replete with inconsistencies, misstatements, and erroneous allegations." AirTran contends that the Carrier's evidence was more reliable, and that it demonstrated, inter alia, that the Maintenance Supervisors discipline and discharge, handle grievances, commit carrier funds, and grant overtime. The Carrier requests that the Board reconsider its decision and dismiss the IBT's application for accretion.
The IBT asserts that the Carrier's Motion "reasserts arguments" previously made to the Board and that the Motion should be denied. According to the IBT, the Carrier provided only one single instance of a Line Maintenance Supervisor exercising any managerial authority. The IBT argues that the Board considered all the record evidence in finding that Line Maintenance Supervisors are not management officials.
The Board finds that AirTran has stated sufficient grounds to grant reconsideration pursuant to the Board's Representation Manual (Manual) Section 17.0.
Manual Section 17.0 states, in part:
Upon consideration of a Motion for Reconsideration, the NMB will decline to grant the relief sought absent a demonstration of material error of law or fact or under circumstances in which the NMB's exercise of discretion to modify the decision is important to the public interest. The mere reassertion of factual and legal arguments previously presented to the NMB generally will be insufficient to obtain relief. Reconsideration may not be sought from the Board's certification or dismissal.
The Board grants relief on Motions for Reconsideration in limited circumstances,
Accordingly, the Board does not intend to reverse prior decisions on reconsideration except in the extraordinary circumstances where, in its view, the prior decision is fundamentally inconsistent with the proper execution of the NMB's responsibilities under the Railway Labor Act.
Virgin Atlantic Airways, 21 NMB 183, 186 (1994).
In its determination, the Board considered the evidence and arguments submitted by the participants in finding that the Maintenance Supervisors shared a work-related community of interest with the Carrier's Mechanics and Related Employees. The Board found that the cumulative evidence demonstrated that AirTran's Line Maintenance Supervisors were not management officials. AirTran, above at 88. Here, AirTran reasserts factual and legal arguments already considered by the Board.
AirTran has failed to demonstrate a material error or law or fact or circumstances on which the Board's exercise of discretion to modify the decision is important to the public interest. Therefore, relief upon reconsideration is denied.
By direction of the NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD.
Benetta M. Mansfield
Chief of Staff