The National Association of Postal Supervisors (the Association) brought action against the U. S. Postal Service, challenging its proposed pay package for supervisory employees. Although the case was dismissed at the district court level, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit reversed and remanded, holding that the Association plausibly alleged that the Postal Service exceeded its statutory authority and failed to follow the commands of the Postal Reorganization Act (the Act).
Importantly, the Act established the Postal Service as an independent agency under the Executive Branch, and it instructs the Postal Service to set the compensation for all officers and employees.
As opposed to clerks and carriers, supervisory and managerial personnel are expressly excluded from representation in collective bargaining units. Instead, the Postal Service must provide a “program for consultation with recognized organizations of supervisory and other managerial personnel.” Here, the Association is a recognized organization. As such, the Postal Service must involve the Association in proposed compensation policies and provide it the opportunity to analyze and criticize the decisions. The Postal Service must provide reasons for rejecting any suggestions by the Association.
The Act also provides a dispute resolution process to be used when a recognized organization believes that the Postal Service is not acting in accordance with the Act. In this process, a fact finding panel convenes to review the Postal Service’s decisions and provide recommendations, and the Postal Service must consider the recommendations and explain its rejections.