FR Doc 2010-19961
[Federal Register: August 12, 2010 (Volume 75, Number 155)]
[Notices]               
[Page 48955-48956]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr12au10-44]                                     
                                    

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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

 
Arbitration Panel Decision Under the Randolph-Sheppard Act

AGENCY: Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of arbitration panel decision under the Randolph-
Sheppard Act.

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SUMMARY: The Department of Education (Department) gives notice that on 
July 17, 2009, an arbitration panel rendered a decision in the matter 
of the Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of 
Rehabilitation Services v. United States Postal Service, Case No. R-S/
06-14. This panel was convened by the Department under 20 U.S.C. 107d-
1(b) after the Department received a complaint filed by the petitioner, 
the Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Rehabilitation 
Services.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: You may obtain a copy of the full text 
of the arbitration panel decision from Suzette E. Haynes, U.S. 
Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW., room 5022, Potomac 
Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-2800. Telephone: (202) 245-7374. If 
you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the 
Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll-free, at 1-800-877-8339.
    Individuals with disabilities may obtain this document in an 
accessible format (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, or computer 
diskette) on request to the contact person listed under FOR FURTHER 
INFORMATION CONTACT.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under section 6(c) of the Randolph-Sheppard 
Act (the Act), 20 U.S.C. 107d-2(c), the Secretary publishes in the 
Federal Register a synopsis of each arbitration panel decision 
affecting the administration of vending facilities on Federal and other 
property.

Background

    The Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of 
Rehabilitation Services, the State licensing agency (SLA) alleged 
violations by the United States Postal Service (USPS) of the Act and 
the implementing regulations in 34 CFR part 395. Specifically, the SLA 
alleged that USPS violated the Act, the implementing regulations, and 
the vending permits held by the SLA concerning a vending machine 
facility operated by a blind vendor at the USPS's Chicago Processing 
and Distribution Center.
    According to the arbitration panel, the issues to be resolved were: 
(1) Whether the USPS cafeteria operations are exempt from the Act and 
whether the vending machines operated by a private vendor at the 
Chicago Processing and Distribution Center are in direct competition 
with the vending machines operated by the SLA's blind vendor; (2) 
Whether the no-commission contracts let by USPS for cafeteria vending 
violated the Act, and what compensatory damages, if any are due the 
SLA; and (3) Whether the SLA may amend its complaint against USPS to

[[Page 48956]]

address information which surfaced during settlement negotiations, 
namely, whether USPS violated the Act, its regulations, and the vending 
permits by closing Break Room A and removing the vending machines for 
34 days, and what compensatory damages, if any, are due the SLA.

Arbitration Panel Decision

    After hearing testimony and reviewing all of the evidence, the 
panel majority ruled that: (1) USPS cafeterias are not exempt from the 
protections of the Act, including the vending machine income sharing 
provisions; (2) The vending machines operated in the cafeteria at the 
Chicago Processing and Distribution Center by a private vendor are in 
direct competition with the blind vendor and are subject to the 100 
percent income sharing provisions under the Act; and (3) The no-
commission contracts let by USPS for cafeteria vending machines at the 
Chicago Processing and Distribution Center under its break-even policy 
violated the purpose and terms of the Act and implementing regulations.
    Thus, the panel majority ruled that USPS must compensate the SLA 
100 percent of vending machine income for all of the vending machines 
located in the rotunda and in the cafeteria at the Chicago Processing 
and Distribution Center in accordance with the income sharing 
provisions of the Act and implementing regulations at 34 CFR 395.32 as 
of September 21, 2006.
    The panel majority further ruled that the USPS must pay interest at 
the Federal interest rate and the method of calculating interest should 
begin only at the end of the month in which the income originally would 
have been earned by the blind vendor and continue forward from that 
time. Additionally, the panel majority determined there was no need to 
allow the SLA to amend its complaint because those issues had already 
been resolved.
    One panel member dissented to a portion of the decision regarding 
the monetary remedy award. Specifically, it was this panel member's 
belief that within 30 days following the date of the arbitration 
panel's decision, USPS should compensate the SLA the amount of 
$5,934.70 for income lost by the blind vendor from January 29 to March 
3, 2007, resulting from violations of the Act. Also, this member 
believed that USPS should compensate the SLA the amount of $318,600 for 
income lost by the SLA and blind vendor as a consequence of vending 
machines operated by a private vendor in direct competition with the 
blind vendor in violation of the income sharing provisions of the Act 
and the relevant permits. Finally, this member believed that USPS 
should pay the SLA interest in the amount of $17,556.83 calculated at 5 
percent per annum, compounded.
    The views and opinions expressed by the panel do not necessarily 
represent the views and opinions of the Department.

Electronic Access to This Document

    You may view this document, as well as all other Department of 
Education documents published in the Federal Register, in text or Adobe 
Portable Document Format (PDF) on the Internet at the following site: 
http://www.ed.gov/news/fedregister.
    To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available 
free at this site. If you have questions about using PDF, call the U.S. 
Government Printing Office (GPO), toll free, at 1-888-293-6498; or in 
the Washington, DC, area at (202) 512-1530.

    Note:  The official version of this document is the document 
published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the 
official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal 
Regulations is available on GPO Access at: 
http://www.gpoaccess.gov/nara/index.html.


    Dated: August 9, 2010.
Alexa Posny,
Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
[FR Doc. 2010-19961 Filed 8-11-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4000-01-P