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GRIFFIN v. ADMINISTRATOR

July 12, 1988

Mattie W. Griffin, Plaintiff,
v.
Administrator, Agency for International Development, Defendant



The opinion of the court was delivered by: RICHEY

 Introduction

 Plaintiff was employed as the Chief of the Agency for International Development's (AID) Travel Support Branch. In August, 1978, she filed a formal complaint charging AID with sex, race, and color discrimination. Plaintiff revised this complaint in July, 1980.

 On January 22, 1982, the parties entered into a agreement settling plaintiff's complaint. The agreement stated that it was the "full and final settlement" of both plaintiff's revised complaint and an unspecified complaint then in the counseling stage. Administrative Record 2. *fn1" Plaintiff agreed to abandon her complaints in exchange for the Agency's agreement "to arrange for a classification audit of the duties and responsibilities of the positions occupied by the complainant in SER/MO *fn2" since February 9, 1975." The agreement further stated that "the audit will be carried out by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) as soon as possible." Id.

 On September 22, 1982, the Office of Personnel Management issued its "advisory classification opinions" concerning the classification of plaintiff's positions from 1975 through September 1982. Administrative Record, at 3. OPM found that, although the job descriptions for positions plaintiff occupied were inadequate, the positions had been properly classified. Id. at 24. Plaintiff apparently did not ask OPM to reconsider its opinion but returned to AID, where she charged that the OPM investigation was flawed and asked AID to reopen her complaint. Id. at 48-49. AID refused to do so, and instead issued a final agency decision finding that the agency had fully complied with the terms of the settlement agreement. Id. at 49.

 On February 23, 1983, plaintiff filed suit in this Court and challenged the position classification. On May 23, 1983, plaintiff dismissed the case, without prejudice, in order to ask the OPM Classification Appeals Office to review the classification of her job position. Id. at 31. In a decision that explicitly stated it was based on plaintiff's then-current duties, and not on duties plaintiff had performed in the past, id., the Classifications Appeals Office found that plaintiff's current duties were improperly classified and upgraded her position from the GS-8 level to the GS-9 level. Id.

 Plaintiff then asked AID to reopen the discrimination complaints that had been the subject of the settlement agreement. Plaintiff argued that the decision of the Classification Appeals Office was not based on new duties and assignments but represented a review and rejection of OPM's prior "advisory classification opinions" that had approved the classification of plaintiff's position. Id. On May 17, 1985, AID rejected plaintiff's request. Plaintiff appealed to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's Office of Hearings and Appeals.

 On July 31, 1985, plaintiff filed another discrimination complaint. The defendant rejected this complaint on September 5, 1985, as it found that the complaint raised matters identical to those raised in the 1978 complaint. Plaintiff appealed this decision to the EEOC's Office of Review and Appeals, which consolidated this action with plaintiff's earlier-filed appeal. On June 17, 1987, the Office of Review and Appeals issued a final decision finding that the agency had fully complied with the settlement agreement, had acted properly in refusing to reopen plaintiff's 1978 complaint, and had properly rejected plaintiff's 1985 discrimination complaint as raising matters identical to those raised in the 1978 action. Id. at 47-53.

 Plaintiff thereupon brought this suit asking for reinstatement of her discrimination and reprisal complaints. Now before the Court are cross-motions for summary judgment. The Court has considered the motions, the legal memoranda submitted by both parties, the administrative record, the arguments presented in open court, and the underlying law. The Court finds that the material facts are undisputed and that summary judgment is appropriate in this case. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 56; see also, e.g., Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S. 242, 91 L. Ed. 2d 202, 106 S. Ct. 2505 (1986). The Court further finds that it must grant defendant's motion for summary judgment in part and deny that motion in part; it must also grant plaintiff's motion for summary judgment in part and deny plaintiff's motion in part.

 DEFENDANTS ARE ENTITLED TO SUMMARY JUDGMENT WITH RESPECT TO ALL CLAIMS THAT WERE SUBJECT TO THE 1982 SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT.

 The terms of the Settlement Agreement are clear. Under that Agreement, the agency:

 
agrees to arrange for a classification audit of the duties and responsibilities of the positions occupied by the complainant in SER/MO since February 9, 1975. The audit will be carried out by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) as soon as possible. ...

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