PRINTER'S NO. 325
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
311
Session of
2017
INTRODUCED BY EICHELBERGER, WAGNER, FOLMER, ALLOWAY, MARTIN,
AUMENT AND STEFANO, FEBRUARY 15, 2017
REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT, FEBRUARY 15, 2017
AN ACT
Amending the act of June 24, 1968 (P.L.237, No.111), entitled
"An act specifically authorizing collective bargaining
between policemen and firemen and their public employers;
providing for arbitration in order to settle disputes, and
requiring compliance with collective bargaining agreements
and findings of arbitrators," further providing for right to
collectively bargain, for duty to exert reasonable efforts,
for commencement of collective bargaining, for board of
arbitration, for notice, for powers and procedures, for
determination of board of arbitration, for costs and
expenses, for applicability, for severability, for repeals
and for effective date; and making editorial changes.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12
of the act of June 24, 1968 (P.L.237, No.111), referred to as
the Policemen and Firemen Collective Bargaining Act, are amended
to read:
Section 1. Right to collectively bargain.
Policemen or firemen employed by a political subdivision of
the Commonwealth or by the Commonwealth shall, through labor
organizations or other representatives designated by [fifty
percent] 50% or more of such policemen or firemen, have the
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right to bargain collectively with their public employers
concerning the terms and conditions of their employment, which
are not otherwise established or prohibited under Federal or
State law, including compensation, hours, working conditions,
retirement, pensions and other benefits, and shall have the
right to an adjustment or settlement of their grievances or
disputes in accordance with the terms of this act.
Section 2. Duty to exert reasonable efforts.
It shall be the duty of public employers and their policemen
and firemen [employes] employees to exert every reasonable
effort to settle all disputes by engaging in collective
bargaining in good faith and by entering into settlements by way
of written agreements and maintaining the same. A party may
assert an unfair labor practice charge for a refusal to bargain
in good faith or a failure to comply with the time periods
provided under this act in accordance with the act of June 1,
1937 (P.L.1168, No.294), known as the Pennsylvania Labor
Relations Act, for which the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board
shall have jurisdiction.
Section 3. Commencement of collective bargaining.
Collective bargaining shall begin at least [six] 10 months
before the start of the fiscal year of the political subdivision
or of the Commonwealth, as the case may be, and any request for
arbitration, as [hereinafter] provided in this act, shall be
made at least [one hundred ten] 180 days before the start of
[said] the fiscal year.
Section 4. Board of arbitration.
(a) Right to request.--
(1) If in any case of a dispute between a public
employer and its policemen or firemen [employes] employees
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the collective bargaining process reaches an impasse and
stalemate, or if the appropriate lawmaking body does not
approve the agreement reached by collective bargaining, with
the result that [said] the employers and [employes] employees
are unable to effect a settlement, [then] either party to the
dispute, after written notice to the other party containing
specifications of the issue or issues in dispute, may request
the appointment of a board of arbitration.
(2) For purposes of this section, an impasse or
stalemate shall be deemed to occur in the collective
bargaining process if the parties do not reach a settlement
of the issue or issues in dispute by way of a written
agreement within [thirty] 60 days after collective bargaining
proceedings have been initiated.
(3) In the case of disputes involving political
subdivisions of the Commonwealth, the agreement shall be
deemed not approved within the meaning of this section if it
is not approved by the appropriate lawmaking body within one
month after the agreement is reached by way of collective
bargaining.
(4) In the case of disputes involving the Commonwealth,
the agreement shall be deemed not approved within the meaning
of this section if it is not approved by the Legislature
within [six months] 180 days after the agreement is reached
by way of collective bargaining.
(b) Composition.--
(1) The board of arbitration shall be composed of three
persons, one appointed by the public employer, one appointed
by the body of policemen or firemen involved, and a neutral
third [member] arbitrator to be agreed upon by the public
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employer and [such] the policemen or firemen. The members of
the board representing the public employer and the policemen
or firemen shall be named within five days from the date of
the request for the appointment of [such] the board.
(2) If, after a period of [ten] 10 days from the date of
the appointment of the two arbitrators appointed by the
public employer and by the policemen or firemen, the neutral
third arbitrator has not been selected by them, [then] either
arbitrator, within five days, may request the American
Arbitration Association, or its successor in function, to
furnish a list of [three] seven members of [said] the
association who are residents of Pennsylvania from which the
neutral third arbitrator shall be selected. [The arbitrator
appointed by the public employer shall eliminate one name
from the list within five days after publication of the list,
following which the arbitrator appointed by the policemen or
firemen shall eliminate one name from the list within five
days thereafter.] In the case of disputes involving political
subdivisions of the Commonwealth, the American Arbitration
Association, or its successor in function, shall provide a
list that contains, if feasible and practical, at least one
name of a resident of the political subdivision in which the
public employer is located.
(3) Beginning with the selection of arbitrators that
occurs between a public employer and policemen or firemen
employed on or after January 1, 2017, the toss of a coin
shall determine which party shall be the first to eliminate a
name from the list provided under paragraph (2). Each
arbitrator shall then engage in alternate eliminations of
names from the list until only one name remains on the list.
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The individual whose name remains on the list shall be the
neutral third arbitrator and shall act as chairman of the
board of arbitration.
(4) The board of arbitration thus established shall
commence the arbitration proceedings within [ten] 10 days
after the neutral third arbitrator is selected and shall make
its determination within [thirty] 60 days after the
appointment of the neutral third arbitrator.
Section 5. Notice.
Notice by the policemen or firemen involved under section 4
shall, in the case of disputes involving the Commonwealth, be
served upon the Secretary of the Commonwealth and, in the case
of disputes involving political subdivisions of the
Commonwealth, shall be served upon the head of the governing
body of the local governmental unit involved.
Section 6. Powers and procedures.
(a) Witnesses and evidence.--Each of the arbitrators
selected in accordance with section 4 [hereof] shall have the
power to administer oaths and compel the attendance of witnesses
and physical evidence by subpoena.
(b) Meetings and records.--
(1) Except as otherwise provided under paragraph (2),
any hearing at which evidence of record is presented by a
party or witness under this act shall be open to the public
and all documents and evidence of record submitted by any
party at the public hearing shall be public records subject
to the act of February 14, 2008 (P.L.6, No.3), known as the
Right-to-Know Law. A stenographic recording shall be made of
the hearing.
(2) Paragraph (1) shall not apply to a bargaining
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session between the parties conducted before the hearing or
an executive session or other meeting between the arbitrators
conducted after the hearing.
Section 7. Determination of board of arbitration.
(a) Finality and comprehensiveness.--The determination of
the majority of the board of arbitration thus established shall
be final on the issue or issues in dispute and shall be binding
upon the public employer and the policemen or firemen involved.
[Such] The determination shall be in writing and contain
specific findings of fact and conclusions of law with regard to
each of the issues presented to the board by the parties. The
issues shall include a complete, accurate and detailed analysis,
based on the evidence presented at the hearing, as evaluated and
studied in any subsequent executive sessions, of all of the
following:
(1) The cost of the award to the political subdivision
and the impact it will have on the finances and services
provided by the political subdivision.
(2) The relationship between projected revenues of the
political subdivision and the ability of the political
subdivision to pay all the costs of the award, including any
cost increases which may result from preexisting terms and
conditions of employment which are allowed to continue under
the award.
(3) The impact of the award on the future financial
stability of the political subdivision.
The determination shall be a public record and a copy [thereof]
of the determination shall be forwarded to both parties to the
dispute. No appeal [therefrom] shall be allowed to any court[.
Such] if the determination complies with this section , unless
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the board of arbitration exceeded its powers or jurisdiction,
the proceedings were irregular, the determination requires an
unconstitutional act or the determination would result in the
deprivation of a constitutional right.
(a.1) Mandate.-- The determination under sub section (a) shall
constitute a mandate to the head of the political subdivision
which is the employer, or to the appropriate officer of the
Commonwealth if the Commonwealth is the employer, with respect
to matters which can be remedied by administrative action, and
to the lawmaking body of [such] the political subdivision or of
the Commonwealth with respect to matters which require
legislative action, to take the action necessary to carry out
the determination of the board of arbitration.
(b) Effect.--With respect to matters which require
legislative action for implementation, [such] the legislation
shall be enacted, in the case of the Commonwealth, within six
months following publication of the findings, and, in the case
of a political subdivision of the Commonwealth, within one month
following publication of the findings. The effective date of
[any such] the legislation shall be the first day of the fiscal
year following the fiscal year during which the legislation is
thus enacted.
(c) References to determination.--A determination of the
board may alternatively be referred to as an award or
settlement. The reference shall not affect the applicability of
this act .
(d) Issues excluded.--No determination may award or
otherwise grant postretirement health or pension benefits that
are not required or authorized under Federal or State law, nor
any other term or condition of employment that is specifically
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exempted from collective bargaining under Federal or State law.
No determination may award or grant any pension benefit or
provision that has been found to be unauthorized, unlawful or
excessive by the Department of the Auditor General or any court
of law.
Section 8. [The compensation, if any, of the arbitrator
appointed by the policemen or firemen shall be paid by them. The
compensation of the other two arbitrators, as well as all
stenographic and other expenses incurred by the arbitration
panel in connection with the arbitration proceedings, shall be
paid by the political subdivision or by the Commonwealth, as the
case may be.] Costs and expenses.
(a) General rule.--Except as provided under sub section (b),
the public employer and the policemen or firemen who are engaged
in the collective bargaining shall bear the costs of their
respective appointed arbitrators, witnesses, including any
actuary or expert witness, and attorneys in any arbitration
proceeding.
(b) Other expenses.--The reasonable fees and costs
associated with the neutral third arbitrator and the
stenographic and other expenses incurred by the board of
arbitration as a result of the arbitration proceedings shall be
divided. One-half of the fees and costs shall be paid by the
public employer and one-half shall be paid by the policemen and
firemen who are engaged in the collective bargaining.
Section 9. Applicability.
The provisions of this act shall be applicable to every
political subdivision of [this] the Commonwealth notwithstanding
the fact that [any such] the political subdivision, either
before or after the passage of this act, has adopted or adopts a
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home rule charter.
Section 10. Severability.
If any provision of this act or the application [thereof] of
any provision of this act to any person or circumstances is held
invalid, the remainder of this act and the application of [such]
the provision to other persons or circumstances, shall not be
affected [thereby], and to this end the provisions of this act
are declared to be severable.
Section 11. Repeals.
All acts or parts of acts inconsistent [herewith] with this
act are [hereby] repealed.
Section 12. Effective date .
This act shall take effect immediately.
Section 2. This act shall take effect in 60 days.
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