Sec. 13A-110

Sec. 13A-110. Negotiability Disputes.
  1. General. A negotiability dispute shall exist when a labor organization and an employer disagree on whether the collective bargaining agreement, applicable rules or regulations, this law, other law or the County Charter, as the case may be, prohibits bargaining with respect to a specified matter. For the purposes of this law, a negotiability dispute shall not refer to the situation where a party refuses to bargain as a matter of choice and not as the result of a purported legal or contractual prohibition or to the situation where the parties are unable to agree upon the terms of a collective bargaining agreement, insofar as the issue in dispute is not "what is negotiable."
  2. Grievances. An issue which involves the interpretation of a controlling agreement in existence shall be resolved under the procedures of the controlling agreement. Additionally, disputes over what is subject to a grievance procedure and what is arbitrable under such procedure shall not be resolved under the procedures set forth in this Section.
  3. Procedure.
    1. The services of the Unfair Labor Practices Panel shall be invoked in the manner prescribed in Section 13A-104(c), provided however, that the parties submit a sworn statement verifying that tentative agreement has been reached on all items of negotiations except those presented to the Panel, or, if this is not the case, a statement indicating why agreement has not been reached on such other matters and why the Panel nevertheless should assert jurisdiction.
    2. The Impasse Panel, while dealing with an impasse, may invoke the provisions of this Section, pursuant to Section 13A-111(c)(2), without the consent of the parties.
    3. The parties, upon request of the Panel, or in petitioning the Panel to settle the dispute, shall stipulate the precise issue to be resolved. Each party shall file within 5 days after the submission of such stipulation, a brief supporting its position along with proof of service of a copy of such brief to all parties.
    4. If the parties cannot agree on a stipulation after reasonable attempts to do so, each shall file a written statement as to what it believes the issue to be, why agreement could not be reached on phrasing of the issue, what attempts were made to reach a stipulation and a brief in support of its position on the issue in dispute.
  4. Powers of the Panel. The Panel, at its discretion, may:
    1. Request the parties to file reply briefs;
    2. Refuse to entertain the matter, or a part thereof, and return the dispute to the parties;
    3. Rephrase the issue and request the parties to submit additional briefs;
    4. Call upon mediation or fact-finding to be used by the parties prior to the Panel's acceptance of the case;
    5. Compel the parties to continue bargaining while the Panel is trying to resolve the issue; or
    6. Render a decision on the issue, in whole or in part.
  5. Panel Procedures upon acceptance of the issue.
    1. The Panel may decide the issue on the record or, after having notified the parties its phrasing of the issue to be resolved, may hear oral argument. Before, during, or after formal proceedings, the Panel may request evidence of added briefs on specified items.
    2. The Panel may invite as participants, experts, witnesses and others who may have an interest, direct or indirect, in the disputed issue or whose participation may assist the Board in reaching a determination. The Panel may also grant requests for the appearance of witnesses and the production of documents or records. The Panel may also take or cause to be taken depositions. Failure to comply with such requests shall be subject to the Panel sanctions applicable to unfair labor practices.
    3. An issue once submitted to the Panel may be withdrawn only upon consent of the Panel and subject to whatever conditions the Panel may prescribe.
  6. The Panel's Decision.
    1. The Panel may issue a statement, accompanied by reasons therefore, indicating whether item in dispute is negotiable. The statement may be accompanied also, when the Panel deems necessary, by an order directing the parties to take or pursue the actions specified in the order. The Panel by means of such order may compel the parties to bargain on such matter. The Panel may also determine, subject to the procedures set forth in Sections 13A-113 and 114, that an unfair labor practice has been committed and may also provide remedies therefore.
    2. To minimize the potential recurrence of similar disputes, the Panel shall publish periodically such decisions and shall distribute copies to all employers within the meaning of this law and to all labor organizations that have attained exclusive recognition.