United States District Court, D. New Jersey
TEAMSTERS LOCAL UNION NO. 177, Petitioner,
UNITED PARCEL SERVICES, Respondent.
McNULTY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is the motion (DE 2) of Teamsters Local Union No.
177 (the "Union") for an order confirming the
Arbitration Award dated January 21, 2018, pursuant to the
Federal Arbitration Act, 9 U.S.C.§§ 1-14,
(''FAA") and Section 301 of the Labor Management
Relations Act, 29 U.S.C. § 185 ("Section
301"). Also before the Court is the motion (DE 11) of
United Parcel Services ("UPS") to dismiss the
Union's petition pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(1) and
states that there is no justiciable controversy; it is
abiding by the arbitrator's ruling and intends to go on
doing so. The Union replies that caution requires it to
confirm the award within the one-year deadline to do so, lest
the Union change its mind and violate the award later. Here
as elsewhere, labor law provides a highly specialized context
and a unique set of policy concerns, discussed herein. I have
followed what appears to be the most applicable appellate
authority, and, for the reasons set forth below, I will deny
the Union's motion and grant UPS's motion to dismiss.
I do so, however, with the understanding that the Union here
enjoys the benefit of a six-year statute of limitations under
Union and UPS are parties to a Collective Bargaining
Agreement, comprised of two separate agreements: the National
Master Agreement between UPS and the International
Brotherhood of Teamsters ("Teamsters"), and a
Supplemental Agreement between UPS and Local 177, i.e., the
Union. (Declaration of Steven Radigan, DE 11-2; Declaration
of Edward H. O'Hare, DE 1-1). The arbitration award in
this matter is dated January 21, 2018. (Id.). In the
arbitration award, the arbitrator, Melissa H. Biren,
determined that "[t]he grievance is sustained. UPS shall
cease and desist assigning package car drivers to work in
buildings outside the area designated in Article 46, Section
3 of the parties' [Collective Bargaining]
Agreement." (Id.; see also Opinion and Award,
Exhibit B, DE 1 pp. 36-43).
asserts that it accepts the award and in no way seeks to
vacate or challenge it. (Declaration of Steven Radigan, DE
11-2). UPS's actions in this matter do not contradict
Union refers to several grievances filed since the CBA was
entered. (Declaration of Christopher Eltzholtz, DE 13-1).
However, those grievances were considered by the arbitrator,
Melissa H. Biren, and were resolved in the Union's favor.
(Id. ¶¶ 4-5). Later, the Union accused UPS
of violating the arbitrator's award. (Id.
¶¶ 7-8). The Union and UPS then settled those
claims with a monetary settlement. (Id.).
Union does not claim that UPS is in violation of the
arbitrator's ruling at this time. Rather, the Union seeks
confirmation of the arbitration award so that, in the future,
the Union will "not be required to continually monitor,
grieve and/or re-litigate a settled dispute."
(Declaration of Christopher Eltzholtz, DE 13-1 ¶ 8).
asserts that its Labor Relations Manager, Steven Radigan,
"contacted Union Secretary-Treasurer Chris Eltzholtz to
ask why the Union filed the instant Petition. Eltzholtz
stated that the Union is attempting to position itself to
penalize UPS in the event the Union perceives violations of
the Award in the future. He also stated that the Union may
try this tactic with other awards, and that he has to protect
this Local from the Company." (Declaration of Steven
Radigan, DE 11-2). In his own affidavit, Christopher
Eltzholtz asserts that "Local 177 is not attempting to
'position itself to penalize UPS.' Instead, given the
aforesaid history, Local 177 has no confidence UPS will abide
by the award. As I understand it, an arbitration award must
be confirmed in as little as one year from its
issuance." (Declaration of Christopher Eltzholtz, DE
January 18, 2019, the Union filed a petition to confirm an
arbitration award. (DE 1). On that same day, the Union moved
to confirm the arbitration award. (DE 2). It asserted that
"[a] brief is unnecessary in light of the simple facts
of this case and the clear authority of this Court to confirm
arbitration awards." (DE 1 ¶ 5).
February 19, 2019, UPS filed an opposition to the verified
petition and a cross-motion to dismiss the verified petition
with prejudice. (DE 11).
March 1, 2019, the Union filed a reply brief in support of
its motion to confirm the arbitration award. (DE 13).
March 5, 2019, I granted UPS permission to file a short
surreply (DE 15), and on March 7, 2019, it did so. (DE 16).
The burden of establishing federal jurisdiction rests with
the party asserting its existence, [citing
DaimlerChrysler Corp. v. Cuno, 547 U.S. 332, 342 n.
3, 126 S.Ct. 1854, 164 L.Ed.2d 589 (2006).] "Challenges
to subject matter jurisdiction under Rule 12(b)(1) may be
facial or factual." [citing Common Cause of Pa. v.
Pennsylvania, 558 F.3d 249, 257 (3d Cir. 2009) (quoting
Taliaferro v. Darby Twp. Zoning Bd., 458 F.3d 181,
188 (3d Cir. 2006)).] A facial attack "concerns 'an
alleged pleading deficiency' whereas a factual attack
concerns 'the actual failure of [a plaintiffs] claims to
comport [factually] with the jurisdictional
prerequisites''' [citing CNA v. United
States, 535 F.3d 132, 139 (3d Cir. 2008) (alterations in
original) (quoting United States ex rel. Atkinson v. Pa.
Shipbuilding Co., 473 F.3d 506, 514 (3d Cir.2007)).]
"In reviewing a facial attack, the court must only
consider the allegations of the complaint and documents
referenced therein and attached thereto, in the light most
favorable to the plaintiff." [citing Gould Elecs.
Inc. v. United States, 220 F.3d 169, 176 (3d Cir.
2000).] By contrast, in reviewing a factual attack, "the
court must permit the plaintiff to respond with rebuttal
evidence in support of jurisdiction, and the court then
decides the jurisdictional issue by weighing the evidence. If
there is a dispute of a material fact, the court must conduct
a plenary hearing on the contested issues prior to
determining jurisdiction." [citing McCann v. Newman
Irrevocable Trust, 458 F.3d 281, 290 (3d Cir. 2006)
Lincoln Ben. Life Co. v. AEI Life, LLC,800 F.3d 99,
105 (3d Cir. 2015) (footnotes omitted; case citations in