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COVID-19 Emergency Considerations for Fiscal Year 2020
Posted On: Jun 03, 2020

COVID-19 Emergency Considerations for Fiscal Year 2020


Idowu Balogun

June 1, 2020 



(This article first appeared in the May/June 2020 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine)

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, parties agree the following conditions will be applied when determining any MS-47, TL-5 Line H liabilities for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20):

Custodians should be utilized to the maximum extent possible, including overtime, in order to ensure all necessary cleaning is completed.

Due to custodians needing to complete regular custodial team cleaning (CTC) routes and the cleaning requirements as stated in MMO-031-20, Influenza and Coronavirus Cleaning Contingency, each day a custodial employee worked his/her duty assignment between March 3, 2020, and May 17, 2020, will be given full Line H credit for the hours worked.

While a facility, or portion of a facility, is closed due to non-usage in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and a custodial route is subsequently suspended, the workhours associated with the suspended route will be deducted from the Line H liability.


Any custodial routes that are suspended in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic will be suspended through the Custodial Workloading (CW) Software and will be unsuspended once the facility, or portion of a facility, is operational, but no later than the expiration of this agreement.


In FY20, once a custodial employee exceeds sixty (60) hours of sick leave, any COVID-19 related absences between February 29, 2020, and May 17, 2020, will reduce the Line H liabilities for that facility by seven (7) hours for each day the employee was unavailable.

The above identified emergency considerations will expire on May 17, 2020. The parties will revisit this issue immediately prior to this MOU’s expiration to determine if extension is appropriate. This agreement does not establish precedent in any future negotiations regarding Line H liabilities.

Maintenance: 2020 National Interest Arbitration Summary

The Maintenance Tentative Agreements listed below from the Craft Table are incorporated into the Award and 2018-2021 Contract:

Article 38.6. A.2: The local APWU President will be provided a copy of the training allocations before solicitation of volunteers.

Article 38.5.B.6: Waiving of 30-day limitation currently placed time frame to request to be placed on Promotion Eligibility Registers (PERs) for new employees.

Article 38.B.7: Elimination of the three-year Open Season. Now, Maintenance employees may request to be placed on PERs at any time and the results will be generated no later than 60 days, instead of the previously existing 150 days.

Article 38.5.B.4.B: Electronic Technician ET-11 will be filled from Electronic Technician ET-10 with at least two years of experience.

Article 38.6.A.1: Involuntary selections for training will be made by inverse seniority on a rotating basis.


Line H Summary of Award

The Line H remedy was remanded to the parties at the National Level for a narrowly focused negotiation to define the terms “fully staffed” and “long term” absence, as written below:

“The types of leave or situations in which this Line H adjustment can be made are limited to the five situations proposed by the Postal Service: military leave; FMLA-covered absences; leave under USERRA; OWCP leave; or court leave. I will also permit the Postal Service to adjust the Line H hours to account for the hours in a staffing package of a custodial position that has been properly withheld as a custodial residual vacancy under Article 12 […]”

DO NOT engage in Line H negotiations with local management using the above exceptions until the conclusion of discussions on the remand at the HQ level.

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