CHAPTER 55

FORMERLY

HOUSE BILL NO. 1

AS AMENDED BY

HOUSE AMENDMENT NOS. 1 & 2

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 40, TITLE 14 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE PUBLIC SCHOOL EMPLOYMENT RELATIONS ACT.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE :

Section 1. Amend §4013(c), Title 14 of the Delaware Code by striking subsection (c) in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof the following:

"(c) For those terms and conditions that are negotiated pursuant to State law, the public school employer and the exclusive bargaining representative shall negotiate written grievance procedures ending in binding arbitration by means of which bargaining unit employees, through their collective bargaining representatives, may appeal the interpretation or application of any term or terms of an existing collective bargaining agreement. The written grievance procedures shall be included in any agreement entered into between the public school employer and the exclusive bargaining representative, and shall include:

(1) a provision to limit binding arbitration to claims that the terms of the collective bargaining agreement have been violated, misinterpreted, or misapplied;

(2) a provision to prohibit claims relating to the following matters from being processed through binding arbitration:

(i) dismissal or nonrenewal of employees covered by Chapter 14 of Title 14;

(ii) dismissal or nonrenewal of employees not covered by Chapter 14 of Title 14 unless the controlling collective bargaining agreement provides that such matters are subject to binding arbitration;

(iii) Delaware law;

(iv) rules and regulations of the Delaware Department of Education or State Board of Education;

(v) the content of or conclusions reached in employee observations and evaluations unless the controlling collective bargaining agreement for employees not covered by Chapter 14 of Title 14 provides that such matters are subject to binding arbitration;

(vi) federal law;

(vii) rules and regulations of the United States Department of Education;

(viii) policies of the local school board; and

(ix) matters beyond the scope of the public school employer's authority;

(3) a provision to select arbitrators by lottery from a panel of qualified arbitrators designated by the Public Employment Relations Board. In designating the panel, the Public Employment Relations Board shall prefer former judges who served on a Delaware constitutional court or on the United States District Court for the District of Delaware, and shall supplement the panel by adding qualified labor arbitrators;

(4) a provision to empower the Public Employment Relations Board to administer arbitrations pursuant to regulations adopted by the Public Employment Relations Board;

(5) a provision to require that disputes relating to whether a matter is arbitrable be ruled upon by the arbitrator prior to hearing the merits of the dispute, and, if the arbitrator determines that the dispute is arbitrable, a provision to require that the same arbitrator schedule a second hearing to hear the merits of the dispute;

(6) a provision to assess against the losing party the arbitrator's fees and expenses incurred in determining whether a dispute is arbitrable; and

(7) a provision to require that the arbitrator's fees and expenses incurred in deciding the merits of a dispute be evenly divided between the parties.".

Section 2. This bill shall become effective upon ratification of a new or extension of an existing collective bargaining agreement, unless agreed otherwise by the parties to an existing collective bargaining agreement. However, a dispute may not be arbitrated under the terms of such a new or extended collective bargaining agreement until the Public Employment Relations Board adopts implementing regulations. If a dispute subject to the provisions of this Act is submitted to arbitration and the Public Employment Relations Board has not adopted implementing regulations, the dispute must be held in abeyance until the implementing regulations are adopted and thereafter be submitted to arbitration.

Section 3. § 4013(c)(3) and (4) of Title 14 shall not apply to the bargaining units currently representing secretarial employees in the Red Clay Consolidated School District and custodial employees in the Appoquinimink School District..

Section 4. § 4013(c)(3) and (4) of Title 14 shall not apply to any bargaining units organized by an employee organization not certified as the exclusive bargaining representative of educational support personnel on the date of its enactment into law. ‘Educational support personnel’ shall for the purposes of this Section be defined as non-teacher employees..

Approved June 24, 2003