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OPM Contact: Melissa Drummond
The claimant filed a claim for compensation of overtime, which she worked during March 2000. We acknowledged receipt of this claim on September 22, 2000. The agency provided information on November 29, 2000. For the reasons stated below, we do not have jurisdiction to consider this claim.
Based on the information provided by the agency, the claimant was a member of a collective bargaining unit during the time of the claim. Moreover, this matter was not excluded from negotiated grievance procedures under the agency's collective bargaining agreement. See Article 39, Section 3, page 100, of the agency's collective bargaining agreement. We confirmed this information with an agency representative on January 3, 2001.
The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) cannot take jurisdiction over the claim of a Federal employee that is or was subject to a negotiated grievance procedure under a collective bargaining agreement between the employee's agency and labor union, unless that matter is or was specifically excluded from the agreement's grievance procedure. This is because the courts have found that Congress intended that such a grievance procedure is to be the exclusive remedy for matters not excluded from the grievance process. Carter v. Gibbs, 909 F.2d 1452, 1454-55 (Fed. Cir. 1990) (en banc), cert. denied, 498 U.S. 811 (1990), construing therein the provision in the Civil Service Reform Act codified at 5 U.S.C. 7121(a). That Act mandates that the grievance procedures in negotiated collective bargaining agreements be the exclusive remedy for matters covered by the agreements. Accord, Paul D. Bills, et al., B260475 (June 13, 1995); Cecil E. Riggs, et al., 71 Comp. Gen. 374 (1992). Accordingly, OPM cannot assert jurisdiction over, or issue a decision concerning, this matter.
This settlement is final. No further administrative review is available within the Office of Personnel Management. Nothing in this settlement limits the claimant's right to bring an action in an appropriate United States Court.