On certification to Superior Court, Appellate Division, whose opinion is reported at 263 N.J. Super. 163 (1993).
Pollock, Wilentz, Clifford, Handler, O'Hern, Garibaldi, Stein
The opinion of the court was delivered by POLLOCK, J.
Like the companion case, Hillsdale PBA Local 207 v. Borough of Hillsdale, N.J. (1994), this appeal questions the role that the factors in N.J.S.A. 34:13A-16g (section 16g) should play in a compulsory-interest-arbitration award. In their contract negotiations, defendant, New Jersey State Policemen's Benevolent Association, Inc., Local 206 (Local 206 or the PBA), and plaintiff, Township of Washington, could not agree on salary increases or on four non-economic issues involving payroll procedure, off-duty police services, maternity leave, and cardiac disability for the years 1991, 1992, and 1993. At the PBA'S request, the Public Employment Relations Commission (PERC) appointed a compulsory-interest arbitrator under that part of the Employer-Employee Relations Act commonly known as the Compulsory Interest Arbitration Act, N.J.S.A. 34:13A-14 to -21 (the Act).
The arbitrator chose the PBA's last offer, and the Chancery Division confirmed the award. The Appellate Division reversed and remanded to a new arbitrator. 263 N.J. Super. 163 (1993). We granted Local 206's petition for certification, 134 N.J. 478 (1993), and now reverse substantially for the same reasons as are set forth in the Hillsdale opinion.
Washington Township offered the following annual increases:
Local 206 proposed semi-annual increases: