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AMALGAMATED TRANSIT UNION v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (10/03/85)

decided: October 3, 1985.

AMALGAMATED TRANSIT UNION, LOCAL NO. 89
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, PENNSYLVANIA LABOR RELATIONS BOARD ET AL. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, PENNSYLVANIA LABOR RELATIONS BOARD, APPELLANT. AMALGAMATED TRANSIT UNION, LOCAL NO. 89 V. COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, PENNSYLVANIA LABOR RELATIONS BOARD ET AL. NEW CASTLE AREA TRANSIT AUTHORITY, APPELLANT



Appeals from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Lawrence County in case of Amalgamated Transit Union, Local No. 89 v. Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board, New Castle Area Transit Authority, Intervenor, No. 90 of 1983.

COUNSEL

Ernest B. Orsaitt, with him, Frank G. Verterano, Gamble, Verterano, Mojock, Piccione & Green, for appellant, New Castle Area Transit Authority.

John B. Newrohr, with him, Allen L. Palmer, James L. Crawford and Kathryn Speaker MacNett, for appellant, Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board.

Joseph C. Farina, for appellee, Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 89.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr., and Judges Craig, MacPhail, Doyle, Barry, Colins and Palladino. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 92 Pa. Commw. Page 145]

The Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board (Board) and the New Castle Area Transit Authority (Authority)*fn1 appeal a Lawrence County Common Pleas Court order holding that a dispatcher/secretary should be included in the bargaining unit of Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 898 (Union). We reverse.

On April 6, 1982, the Union sought to include the position, dispatcher/secretary, into an existing twenty-two member bargaining unit composed of drivers, mechanics

[ 92 Pa. Commw. Page 146]

    and bus washers employed by the Authority.*fn2 The dispatcher/secretary position was held by Rosalie Costa. After a hearing, the examiner held that Costa should be excluded from the unit. The Board affirmed and held that Costa lacked a community of interest with the pre-existing unit of blue collar employees. The Board found that Costa's duties were primarily secretarial/clerical. The common pleas court reversed and held that the Board erred as a matter of law by relying on the effects of community of interest rather than over-fragmentization.

The Board and the Authority contend that the common pleas court erred as a matter of law in considering over-fragmentization since Costa and the existing Union members did not share a community of interest. We agree.

Section 604(1) of the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Act*fn3 (PLRA) provides:

The board shall determine the appropriateness of a unit which shall be the public employer unit or a subdivision thereof. In determining the ...


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