Thursday, January 22, 2015

Arbitrator rules that retired employees entitled to certain benefits available to active employee as though their service “was not interrupted”



Arbitrator rules that retired employees entitled to certain benefits available to active employee as though their service “was not interrupted”
Matter of Port Auth. of N.Y. & N.J. v Port Auth. Police Lieutenants Benevolent Assn., 2015 NY Slip Op 00459, Appellate Division, First Department [See, also, Matter of Port Auth. of N.Y. & N.J. v Port Auth. Police Sergeants Benevolent Assn., 2015 NY Slip Op 00460 and Matter of Port Auth. of N.Y. & N.J. v Port Auth. Police Sergeants Benevolent Assn. 2015 NY Slip Op 00326 handed down on the same day by the the First Department]


Supreme Court confirmed an arbitration award that held that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey violated the parties' governing collective bargaining agreement when the Authority discontinued “free "E-Z Pass" privileges for retired police lieutenants.

The Appellate Division unanimously affirmed the lower court’s ruling, explaining that the relevant “Memorandum of Agreement” [MOA] expressly incorporated the terms of a 1973 Port Authority Administrative Instruction, PAI 40-1.01, that provides that retired employees "receive the same allowance to which they would be entitled if their Port Authority service was not interrupted."

The court held that this language vests retired members of the Authority with a lifetime interest in the EZ-Pass privileges they enjoyed while employed did not exceed the arbitrator's authority since it is not "completely irrational."

The court also commented that Supreme Court stated in its ruling that the arbitrator noted that "it will take a new Collective Bargaining Agreement and MOA to end free passes for [the Authority's] members, past and present."

The Appellate Division observed that the court's remark regarding "a new collective bargaining agreement" is dictum and that the statement of the arbitrator, that the court paraphrased, was also dictum

"Dictum" is Latin for "remark," and is used to describe a comment by a judge or other tribunal in a decision or ruling that is not required to reach the decision and which does not have the full force of a precedent.

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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