INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACTS, 1946 TO 1990
SECTION 26(1), INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS ACT, 1990
CLARE COUNTY COUNCIL
- AND -
IRISH MUNICIPAL, PUBLIC AND CIVIL TRADE UNION
Chairman: Mr Duffy
Employer Member: Ms Doyle
Worker Member: Ms Tanham
1. (1) Loss of earnings in Motor Taxation Office. (2) Loss of earnings for two data checkers.
2. This dispute concerns a claim for compensation for loss of overtime earnings, which was caused by the Council's decision reduce the opening hours of the Motor Taxation Office. This dispute could not be resolved at local level and was the subject of a Conciliation Conference under the auspices of the Labour Relations Commission. As agreement was not reached, the dispute was referred to the Labour Court on the 30th November, 2010, in accordance with Section 26(1) of the Industrial Relations Act, 1990. A Labour Court hearing took place on the 25th October, 2011.
3 1 The overtime was regular and rostered.
2 The Workers have suffered a considerable and ongoing loss.
3 The Workers should be compensated at 1.5 times the annual loss.
4 1 In an attempt to make savings without impacting on service to the public, the Council sought to replace this paid overtime with time off in lieu of overtime.
2 The Workers' refusal to accept time off in lieu of overtime forced the Council to eliminate the extended opening hours.
3. This overtime was not regular and rostered so the payment of compensation for its loss is not appropriate.
It is established in a number of previous Court Recommendation that the withdrawal of regular and rostered overtime should attract compensation. Consequently the core issue for consideration is whether the overtime in issue was regular and rostered or voluntary.
While it is accepted that the overtime in issue is regular there is a sharp disagreement between the parties on whether or not is was rostered.
It seems to the court that before this claim cannot be advanced further the until facts concerning how staff were allocated to work overtime, the degree to which staff could decline to work overtime and the degree of involvement by management in deciding the numbers to be allocated to overtime are established
In these circumstances the Court could not formulate a Recommendation until the factual position in that regard is established. The parties should have direct discussions for the purpose of establishing the material facts concerning the circumstances in which the overtime in issue came to be allocated. Having established the facts in that regard the matter should be referred back to the Court. The parties will then be facilitated with an early hearing.
Signed on behalf of the Labour Court
14th November, 2011______________________
Enquiries concerning this Recommendation should be addressed to Jonathan McCabe, Court Secretary.