Department of Labor and Industry

Board Minutes

Minutes - November 19, 2009



Jack Holstrom, Presiding Officer
Jay Reardon
Steve Johnson
Quinton Nyman
Karla Stanton


Marieke Beck, Board Attorney
Tonya McCormack
John Andrew
Paul Melvin
Joe Maronick
Ron Stormer

Board Business

Approval of Minutes:
Minutes for July 16, 2009 meeting were approved. Member Reardon moved to approve, Member Stanton seconded the motion. Motion passed 5-0

Next Meeting Date:
The next meeting is set for December 17th in the second floor west conference room B of the Employment Relations Building, 1805 Prospect Avenue, Helena, Montana. Member Nyman has to recues himself from the oral argument.

On October 14, 2009, Governor Schweitzer appointed Michael Thiel as the alternate Board Member to replace Robin Rowe.

Member Reardon thanked Board Secretary Windy Knutson for the organization and file preparation and Board Attorney Marieke Beck for putting together the summaries outlining the case before the Board. Board Members, Nyman, Johnson, Stanton and Board Chair Holstrom concurred.

Attorney Comments - Board Attorney Marieke Beck:
Board Attorney Beck would like to add 15 minutes of training at the next Board meeting on ‘how to properly do a motion before the Board’. The Board looks at the Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law from the Hearings Officer’s decisions. So when Board Members want to affirm or motions with modifications the Findings of Fact it can be referenced easier when she goes back to write the Final Order.

Oral Argument - Unfair Labor Practice 6-2009 & 8-2009

Laurel Unified Education Association, MEA-MFT v. Yellowstone County School District Nos. 7 & 10

The above matter came before the Board. Jack Holstrom was the Presiding Officer in this matter.

Oral argument was presented. Vicki McDonald appeared before the Board to represent the Laurel Unified Education Association, MEA-MFT; Larry Martin appeared before the Board to represent Yellowstone County School Districts Nos. 7 & 10.

The matter before the Board was to determine if the Hearings Officer’s decision was in error. The ULPs were found that the Yellowstone County School District Nos. 7 & 10 were in violation of an unfair labor practice of not bargaining with the union. Board Member Reardon moved to affirm the Board Agent’s decision and Member Johnson seconded the motion.

Upon discussion of the Board, Member Reardon asked three questions. If there was a significant change in the face to face contact to be substantial in regards to the wages, benefits? Was the Union timely, if so did union waive the rights with past practices. It wasn’t raised in the past because of minimal changes from 2005-2008 but substantial in 2009. Was the District in violation of law by refusing to bargain?

Member Johnson concurred with Member Reardon and also brought forth the Bonner Case.

Member Nyman concurred with Member Reardon and Member Johnson. Past practices – benefits increased don’t bargain.

Member Stanton concurred with Member Reardon, Member Johnson and Member Nyman. The Union asked to bargain and it should have been granted.

Presiding Officer concurred with Member Reardon, Member Johnson, Member Nyman and Member Stanton but stated that on page 17 of the Hearings Officer’s decision that in item #2 it should be corrected.

Member Reardon withdrew his first motion and amended his motion to adopt the Hearings Officer’s Decision with the proposed change to page 17, item #2 of the Hearings Officer’s decision. Member Nyman seconded the motion. Motion passed 5-0.