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TOWNSHIP MOON v. POLICE OFFICERS TOWNSHIP MOON (06/01/84)

decided: June 1, 1984.

TOWNSHIP OF MOON, APPELLANT
v.
POLICE OFFICERS OF THE TOWNSHIP OF MOON, APPELLEE. MOON TOWNSHIP POLICE OFFICERS, APPELLANT V. TOWNSHIP OF MOON, APPELLEE



Appeals from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in the case of Township of Moon v. Police Officers of the Township of Moon, No. GD 82-6872.

COUNSEL

Joseph Mack, III, with him, Kurt A. Miller, Thorp, Reed & Armstrong, and Ira F. Bradford, Jr., for appellant/appellee, Township of Moon.

Dina G. McIntyre, McIntyre & McIntyre, for appellee/appellant, Police Officers of the Township of Moon.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr. and Judges Rogers, Williams, Jr., Craig, MacPhail, Barry and Colins. Opinion by Judge MacPhail. Concurring and Dissenting Opinion by Judge Barry. Judge Rogers and Judge Williams, Jr. join in this Concurring and Dissenting Opinion.

Author: Macphail

[ 83 Pa. Commw. Page 15]

The Township of Moon (Township) appeals here from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County which upheld challenged portions of an arbitration award rendered under the Act of June 24, 1968, P.L. 237, as amended, 43 P.S. §§ 217.1-217.10 (Act 111). The Police Officers of the Township of Moon (Policemen) cross appeal that portion of the Court order which remanded the award of the arbitrator.

The Policemen are a collective bargaining unit constituting the entire police department of the Township except the Chief of Police. In 1981 the Township and the Policemen bargained collectively pursuant to Act 111. After an impasse was reached, the parties proceeded to arbitration before a Board of three arbitrators. The Board rendered its award on March 4, 1982, with the Township's arbitrator dissenting.

The Township challenged Sections 2, 9, and 13 of the award. The court of common pleas upheld Section

[ 83 Pa. Commw. Page 162]

, but remanded it to the Board to substitute a tripartite board for a single arbitrator. Additionally, the court struck down Section 9 and upheld Section 13. The Township here continues its challenge to Sections 2 and 13, while the Policemen object to the remand regarding Section 2.*fn1

Section 2 of the Board's award replaced the parties' present grievance procedure with a new procedure requiring, inter alia, submission of unsettled grievances to binding arbitration in accordance with the rules of the American Arbitration Association and in conformity with the Uniform Arbitration Act, 42 Pa. C.S. §§ 7301-7320. The common pleas court carefully considered the state of the law regarding grievance arbitration under Act 111, and concluded that the award providing a grievance procedure should be upheld with the exception that Act 111 requires a tripartite panel of arbitrators rather than the single arbitrator provided under the rules of the American Arbitration Association. The court therefore remanded so that the Board could substitute a tripartite panel for the single arbitrator.

Section 13 of the award provided that Policemen may reside up to five miles outside the Township line. In upholding that section the court of common pleas determined that the residency provision was an appropriate subject for arbitration rather than a criterion for employment, citing Cheltenham Township v. Cheltenham Police Department, 8 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 360, 301 A.2d 430 (1973).

The Township appeals Section 2 on the basis that the award of binding arbitration was in excess of the authority of the Board, ...


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