Additional Safeguards Needed for Tennessee Valley Authority Trades and Labor Employees To Protect Their Interests in Collective Bargaining

FPCD-78-12: Published: Mar 15, 1978. Publicly Released: Mar 15, 1978.

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Concern has been expressed about the denial of rights to the Tennessee Valley Authority's (TVA) trades and labor employees. A review of TVA labor-management relations program focused on the effect of TVA exemption from laws and regulations applicable to labor relations in the private and federal sector and on the labor relations program's collective bargaining structure.

Because of the similarity of TVA operations to private industry, Congress permitted TVA the authority and flexibility to operate autonomously in personnel matters. As an employer, TVA was exempted from most civil service laws and regulations as well as those governing labor-management relations in the private and federal sectors. The structure of bargaining for trades and labor employee representatives is centralized both vertically and horizontally, and decisionmaking has moved from the locals to the national levels of the unions. This centralized union bargaining structure and the exemption from labor legislation have resulted in a decline of employee control and participation and a dissolution of employee rights. There seem to be few, if any, avenues of relief for employees dissatisfied with the negotiated agreements or the positions taken by their union representatives. Employees do not have access to statutory labor relations procedures to handle and resolve complaints.

Matter for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Matter: Congress should include TVA employees under either existing statutory labor relations procedures or any forthcoming legislative procedures applicable to other federal employees. The Board of Directors of TVA should take measures to enhance employee influence over the bargaining process.


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