Decision 1760H – Trustees of the California State University

LA-CE-717-H

Decision Date: March 30, 2005

Decision Type: PERB Decision

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Perc Vol: 29
Perc Index: 105

Decision Headnotes

201.00000 – PARTIES; DEFINITIONS; WHO IS AN EMPLOYER?
201.02000 – Agents (See also 1400)

Skelley officer’s actions cannot be imputed to the university without evidence showing the university authorized him to act.

602.00000 – EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; UNILATERAL CHANGE (FOR NEGOT OF SPECIFIC SUBJECTS, SEE SEC 1000, SCOPE OF REPRESENTATION)
602.03000 – Contract Repudiation or Breach

To determine whether the university departed from its past policy or practice when it adopted Skelly hearing instructions, the Board must first interpret the language of the policy at issue. The plain language of the policy must be accepted if it is clear and unambiguous. Where any ambiguity exists, it is proper to rely on extrinsic evidence to ascertain the meaning of the policy; p. 10.

608.00000 – EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES
608.12000 – Good Faith; DeMinimus; Temporary Change

In the absence of any evidence showing that the university had authorized its Skelly hearing officer to exclude a second union representative from the hearing, the hearing officer's misinterpretation of the university's instructions cannot be imputed to the university; p. 14. The Skelly hearing officer's actions constituted only a one-time breach of the university's policy, and did not have a generalized effect or continuing impact upon the terms and conditions of employment of bargaining unit members; p. 14.

1404.00000 – GENERAL LEGAL PRINCIPLES; CONTRACT ENFORCEMENT/ INTERPRETATION
1404.03000 – General Principles of Contract Interpretation

To determine whether the university departed from its past policy or practice when it adopted Skelly hearing instructions, the Board must first interpret the language of the policy at issue. The plain language of the policy must be accepted if it is clear and unambiguous. Where any ambiguity exists, it is proper to rely on extrinsic evidence to ascertain the meaning of the policy; p. 10.

1503.00000 – MISCELLANEOUS ISSUES; REGULATIONS
1503.02000 – Regulations Considered (By Number)

Regulation 32178 provides that the charging party has the burden of proof. In this case, the union failed to present any rebuttal evidence to show that the witness' testimony concerning the Skelly hearing policy was incorrect; p. 13.