Schools Salary Formula Goes to Arbitration – Read the Award

I recently received permission from the Oakland Unified School District and the Oakland Education Association, the representative of the certificated staff, to publish a grievance arbitration award. The case concerned the interpretation of a complex salary formula negotiated by the parties in their collective bargaining agreement. To read the award, click here. – Paul

New Private Hospital Grievance Arbitration Award Available

I have recently obtained permission of the parties to publish a case involving lead nurses at a private hospital. The case had many complex elements, including an NLRB charge, a prior related arbitration decision, and bargaining history. To read the award, with employee names redacted, click here. – Paul

New Factfinding Report – A California Special District Dispute

I recently served as the neutral chairperson for a factfinding process at the El Dorado Hills Community Services District with the El Dorado County Employees Association. In the report, I sided with the employer’s position on two issues and the union’s position on one issue. However, the employer panel member concurred with the entire report. The report has now been made public, as per requirements in the Meyers Milias Brown Act, and is linked here. – Paul

Ten Grievance Arbitration Decisions Now Published on this Website

I recently added three decisions to my list of published grievance arbitration awards, bringing the total to ten. Each decision is listed with the grievance title and an indication of how the case came out for the parties. I have tried to include a mix of discipline and contract cases with varying outcomes.

I routinely ask parties for permission to publish awards. Often, permission is not granted by one party or the other. I never publish without permission of both sides. And when I do publish, I take the extra step of redacting names of grievants and other employees from the award. This provides an additional level of privacy for those involved in arbitration proceedings, often not of their own choosing.

You can view the awards here.


Presentation About MMBA Factfinding at Bar Association Conference

On April 22, 2016, I was on a panel on factfinding in local government at a conference at the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley. The panel was part of the annual public sector conference of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of California. Joining me on the panel were arbitrator Carol Vendrillo, labor-side  attorney Rob Szykowny, and management-side attorney Shelline Bennett. The panel moderator was Carol Koenig of Wylie, McBride, Platten & Renner. The panel title is The Evolving Law and Rules of Factfinding Under the MMBA. Here is a copy of the article I submitted for the panel, titled “Why Factfinding Needs Baseball.” –  Paul

Factfinding Report Issued for City of Marina and MPSOA

I recently issued a factfinding report on the collective bargaining dispute between the City of Marina and the Marina Public Safety Officers Association. This was the first time in my experience that the parties have dispensed with a tripartite panel in this type of a dispute and designated me as the sole factfinder. The report is linked here. – Paul

Visiting with a Graduate seminar in Ghana

I had a once in a lifetime opportunity recently to speak to a class of graduate students in industrial relations and human resources at the University of Cape Coast in Cape Coast, Ghana. Here is a photo of me with the students, taken on March 3, 2016. Professor Nicodemus Osei-Uwusu is on the far right. – Paul


Factfinding Report for Oakland Housing Authority – SEIU Local 1021

I recently chaired a factfinding panel for the collective bargaining dispute between the Oakland Housing Authority and SEIU Local 1021. The report has now been published, and can be read here. – Paul

Recording of New Advocate Webinar Available from AAA

In October 2015, Arbitrator Catherine Harris and I presented a 90-minute live webinar on “Surviving Your First Labor Arbitration: Tips for the New Advocate.” A recording of that webinar is now available for purchase from the American Arbitration Association, at this link. Completion of the webinar can qualify for CLE credits. – Paul

Factfinding Report – City of Palo Alto and SEIU Local 521

I was selected by the City of Palo Alto and SEIU Local 521 to serve as the the neutral chairperson of their factfinding panel. The report on that matter has now been published. It is available at this link. This was an unusual factfinding, since it concerned a single issue – contracting out – that arose during the term of the parties’ collective bargaining agreement. – Paul