City of Torrington and AFSCME, Council 15, Local 442
A grievance may not be arbitrable if the union fails to prosecute the grievance timely. On April 21, 2010, the union filed a grievance concerning the retiree medical coverage of police officers who were on the police force. Personnel Director Thomas Gritt scheduled a meeting with the union on June 30, after a conference on a prohibited practice complaint. After the conference, the union representative allegedly left and did not mention the grievance or promptly request to hold the grievance hearing. In September or October, the union again pursued the grievance and requested to schedule another Step Two hearing. Personnel Director Thomas Gritt denied the grievance on October 12, because it was not prosecuted timely. The city also claimed that the grievance was not arbitrable, because it remained hypothetical. The union requested arbitration on April 7, 2011. The union claimed that the parties were not required to meet at Step Two and that the union timely proceeded to Step Three on Oct. 20, 2010, after the Step Two meeting was re-scheduled. Arbitrators found that the grievance was not prosecuted timely and was not arbitrable. "The unanimous Panel," wrote the arbitrators, "concludes that the Union did not process the grievance in a reasonable time frame because the Union failed to meet with the City at Step Two on June 30, 2010 as agreed and then waited three months to resurrect the grievance and to continue processing it to Arbitration ten months later in April 2011." Victor Muschell represented the municipality, and Kelly Rommel represented the union.