B-126567, MAR. 1, 1956

B-126567: Mar 1, 1956

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FEDERAL MEDIATION AND CONCILIATION SERVICE: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 6. YOU REFER TO THE FOLLOWING LANGUAGE IN SECTION 202/B) OF PUBLIC LAW 101: "* * * THE DIRECTOR IS AUTHORIZED TO MAKE SUCH EXPENDITURES FOR SUPPLIES. SERVICES AS HE DEEMS NECESSARY. * * *" YOU STATE THAT IT IS YOUR JUDGMENT THAT THE FIELD OF LABOR MANAGEMENT RELATIONS IS AN EVER-EXPANDING AND COMPLEX AREA IN WHICH THE KNOWLEDGE OF TRENDS AND PRACTICES BY MANAGEMENT AND MEDIATOR PERSONNEL MUST BE KEPT CURRENT TO ASSURE QUALITY OF PERFORMANCE BY EMPLOYEES OF YOUR SERVICE. AS FOLLOWS: "AN EXAMPLE OF COURSES BEING CONSIDERED IS THE FOUR-WEEK SEMINARS IN HUMAN RELATIONS IN ADMINISTRATION OFFERED BY THE NEW YORK STATE SCHOOL OF INDUSTRIAL AND LABOR RELATIONS AT CORNELL UNIVERSITY INCLUDING ORGANIZATION.

B-126567, MAR. 1, 1956

TO THE DIRECTOR, FEDERAL MEDIATION AND CONCILIATION SERVICE:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF JANUARY 6, 1956, CONCERNING YOUR AUTHORITY TO AUGMENT THE TRAINING OF MANAGEMENT AND MEDIATION EMPLOYEES OF YOUR SERVICE BY PROVIDING INSTRUCTION THROUGH LIMITED SHORT TERM COURSES OFFERED BY COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES.

IN YOUR LETTER YOU STATE THAT IN YOUR JUDGMENT THE PROVISIONS OF THE LABOR MANAGEMENT RELATIONS ACT, 1947, PUBLIC LAW 101, 80TH CONGRESS, 60 STAT. 136, VESTS IN YOU THE AUTHORITY TO AUTHORIZE THE PAYMENT OF TUITION, TRANSPORTATION AND PER DIEM TO EMPLOYEES OF THE SERVICE FROM YOUR PRESENT AND SUBSEQUENT APPROPRIATIONS. SPECIFICALLY, YOU REFER TO THE FOLLOWING LANGUAGE IN SECTION 202/B) OF PUBLIC LAW 101:

"* * * THE DIRECTOR IS AUTHORIZED TO MAKE SUCH EXPENDITURES FOR SUPPLIES, FACILITIES, AND SERVICES AS HE DEEMS NECESSARY. * * *"

YOU STATE THAT IT IS YOUR JUDGMENT THAT THE FIELD OF LABOR MANAGEMENT RELATIONS IS AN EVER-EXPANDING AND COMPLEX AREA IN WHICH THE KNOWLEDGE OF TRENDS AND PRACTICES BY MANAGEMENT AND MEDIATOR PERSONNEL MUST BE KEPT CURRENT TO ASSURE QUALITY OF PERFORMANCE BY EMPLOYEES OF YOUR SERVICE.

YOUR LETTER CONTINUES, IN PART, AS FOLLOWS:

"AN EXAMPLE OF COURSES BEING CONSIDERED IS THE FOUR-WEEK SEMINARS IN HUMAN RELATIONS IN ADMINISTRATION OFFERED BY THE NEW YORK STATE SCHOOL OF INDUSTRIAL AND LABOR RELATIONS AT CORNELL UNIVERSITY INCLUDING ORGANIZATION, MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING - HUMAN RELATIONS AND COMMUNICATIONS - EMPLOYEE RELATIONS AS A MANAGEMENT FUNCTION AND INDUSTRIAL AND LABOR RELATIONS. ANOTHER EXAMPLE IS THE MANAGEMENT COURSE OFFERED BY THE AMERICAN MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION INCLUDING INSTRUCTION IN MANAGEMENT PRINCIPALS, SKILLS AND TOOLS COMMON TO SOUND EXECUTIVE ACTION. THE LATTER COURSE INVOLVES FOUR WEEKLY UNITS OF INSTRUCTION.'

IN CONNECTION WITH THE FOREGOING, YOU PRESENT THE FOLLOWING TWO QUESTIONS FOR DECISION:

"DOES THE LANGUAGE REFERRED TO ABOVE, AS QUOTED FROM PUBLIC LAW 101, AUTHORIZE THE EXPENDITURE OF APPROPRIATED FUNDS FOR THE FURTHER TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT OF PERMANENT EMPLOYEES' SKILLS IN THE WORK OF THE FEDERAL MEDIATION AND CONCILIATION SERVICE?

"DOES THIS LANGUAGE VEST IN ME THE AUTHORITY TO ENTER INTO CONTRACTS WITH EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS AND INDIVIDUALS FOR THE PRESENTATION OF LECTURES AND COURSES OF STUDY FOR THE FURTHER TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT OF PERMANENT EMPLOYEES OF THIS SERVICE?

WE HAVE BEEN INFORMALLY ADVISED BY YOUR SERVICE THAT THE SECOND QUESTION CONTEMPLATES THE PRESENTATION OF LECTURES AND COURSES OF STUDY BY REPRESENTATIVES OF EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS AND INDIVIDUALS AT THE OFFICES OF YOUR SERVICE.

FUNDS APPROPRIATED TO YOUR SERVICE ARE AVAILABLE FOR "EXPENSES NECESSARY FOR THE SERVICE TO CARRY OUT THE FUNCTIONS VESTED IN IT BY THE LABOR- MANAGEMENT RELATIONS ACT, 1947.' SEE DEPARTMENTS OF LABOR, AND HEALTH, EDUCATION, AND WELFARE, AND RELATED AGENCIES APPROPRIATION ACT, 1956, 69 STAT. 397, 411.

THE MATTER IS NOT ENTIRELY FREE FROM DOUBT (AT LEAST AS TO YOUR AUTHORITY TO EXPEND APPROPRIATED FUNDS TO SEND YOUR EMPLOYEES TO PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS OF LEARNING TO PURSUE THE COURSES OF STUDY IN QUESTION). HOWEVER, IN VIEW OF THE BROAD AUTHORITY VESTED IN YOU BY SECTION 202/B) OF PUBLIC LAW 101, NAMELY TO MAKE SUCH EXPENDITURES FOR SUPPLIES, FACILITIES, AND SERVICES AS YOU DEEM NECESSARY, AND SINCE THE COURSES OF STUDY INVOLVED HERE RELATE, MORE OR LESS DIRECTLY, TO THE LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS FIELD, YOU ARE ADVISED THAT IF YOU SHOULD DETERMINE THAT THE LECTURES, TRAINING OR COURSES OF STUDY REFERRED TO IN YOUR LETTER (OR THE CONTRACTS REFERRED TO THEREIN) ARE NECESSARY FOR THE PROPER ADMINISTRATION OF THE DUTIES OF THE SERVICE UNDER PUBLIC LAW 101, WE WOULD NOT BE REQUIRED TO QUESTION THE LEGAL AVAILABILITY OF APPROPRIATIONS MADE TO THE SERVICE FOR CARRYING OUT THE PURPOSES OF SAID PUBLIC LAW, FOR EXPENDITURES MADE IN CONNECTION WITH SUCH LECTURES, TRAINING, COURSES OF STUDY OR CONTRACTS.