OSHRC Docket No. 79-6487

Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission

September 30, 1982


Before ROWLAND, Chairman; CLEARY, Commissioner. *

* Commissioner Cottine has disqualified himself from participating in the disposition of this case on consideration of the Respondent's motion seeking his disqualification and the memoranda filed in response by the Secretary and the Authorized Employee Representative.


Office of the Solicitor, USDOL

Mr. Herman Grant, Esq., USDOL, Office of the Solicitor

Robert H. Buckler, for the employer

Dan C. Edwards, Int'l. Rep., Oil, Chemical & Atomic Workers, Int'l. Union & Local 7-1, for the employees




An order of Administrative Law Judge William E. Brennan approving a settlement agreement between the Secretary of Labor and Amoco Oil Company is before the Commission for review.   The judge held that the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers International Union and its Local 7-1 were not entitled to an evidentiary hearing on certain objections it raised to the agreement.   The principal issue on review is whether an employee party can object to the plan of abatement contained in a settlement agreement between the Secretary of Labor and a cited employer.

The two participating members are divided on the disposition [*2]   of this case.   Chairman Rowland would affirm the judge's ruling on the ground that the Commission lacks authority to consider employee objections which are not related to the abatement period.   Mobil Oil Corp., Docket No. 77-4386 (Aug. 6, 1982) (dissenting opinion).   Chairman Rowland notes that the Secretary and Amoco modified the agreement to accommodate the Union's objections to the time permitted for abatement, thus eliminating from any possible controversy the one point on which he would permit an employee party to object to a settlement agreement.   Commissioner Cleary would vacate the judge's order and hold that the Commission has juriodiction to consider the Union's substantive objections to the settlement agreement.   For the reasons stated in his concurring opinion in Mobil Oil Corp., supra, Commissioner Cleary would hold that under section 10(c) of the Act affected employees who have elected party status must be afforded the opportunity to review and raise objections to settlements proposed by the other parties, including objections to matters other than the abatement period specified in a settlement proposal.

In view of the divided vote on the merits of the case,   [*3]   Chairman Rowland and Commissioner Cleary agree to dispose of the case by vacating the direction for review.   Baldwin Industries, Inc., 82 OSAHRC    , BNA OSHC 1572, 1982 CCH OSHD P25,980 (No. 78-741), appeal filed, No. 82-7178 (11th Cir. May 28, 1982).

Accordingly, the direction for review is vacated and the judge's order is the Commission's final disposition of this case.   SO ORDERED.