Section 30 and 31
INALIENABILITY OF BENEFITS, Waiver of benefits, Public Employment Relations Act, Statutory construction
CITE AS: Oak Park Education Association, MEA/NEA v Oak Park Board of Education, 132 Mich App 680 (1984).
Appeal pending: No
Employer: Oak Park Board of Education
Docket No: NA
COURT OF APPEALS HOLDING: The Public Employment Relations Act is the dominant law regulating public employee labor relations and where there is a conflict between it and another statute the Public Employment Relations Act prevails diminishing the conflicting statute pro tanto.
FACTS: Oak Park Education Association and Oak Park School District negotiated a labor contract containing a salary provision which provided that the salary of a teacher recalled from summer layoff would be offset by the amount of unemployment benefits received during the summer layoff. When the district sought to enforce this provision, the Association sought to have the provision excised from the contract asserting that it was in violation of Section 30 of the MES Act which makes unemployment benefits inalienable by any assignment and Section 31 of the Act which makes invalid any agreement to waive, release, or commute an individual's right to benefits.
DECISION: The trial court's summary judgment for the District was affirmed.
RATIONALE: The Public Employment Relations Act requires parties to those contracts within its preview to bargain collectively with respect to wages. The provision in question concerns wages and was the subject of bargaining between the parties. The teachers were allowed to collect benefits when unemployed. The provision provides for a partial waiver of salary rather than a waiver of unemployment benefits. It did not require the teachers to waive, or in any way restrict, their rights under the MES Act.