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Fraternal Order of Police Library of Congress Labor Committee v. Library of Congress

August 3, 2009

FRATERNAL ORDER OF POLICE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS LABOR COMMITTEE, PLAINTIFF,
v.
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, ET AL., DEFENDANTS.
JOY A. MYERS, PLAINTIFF,
v.
UNITED STATES CAPITOL POLICE BOARD, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Henry H. Kennedy, Jr. United States District Judge

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

Plaintiff the Fraternal Order of Police Library of Congress Labor Committee ("FOP") brings case 1:08-cv-01139 ("FOP Case") against defendants the Library of Congress ("LOC"), James H. Billington in his official capacity as Librarian of Congress ("Librarian"), the United States Capitol Police ("USCP"), and the United States Capitol Police Board ("Board"). The FOP alleges two claims arising out of the merger of the LOC Police into the USCP ("Merger"): a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e ("Title VII"), and a violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, 29 U.S.C. § 633a(a) ("ADEA").

Plaintiff Joy Myers, a fifty-eight year old officer with the LOC Police, brings case 1:09-cv-00666 ("Myers Case") against the Board alleging Title VII and ADEA claims arising out of the Merger.

Before the Court are the FOP's motion for a preliminary injunction [#21] and Myers's motions for preliminary and permanent injunctions [##3, 4]. Upon consideration of the motions, the oppositions thereto, the July 29, 2009 oral argument, and the record of this case, the Court concludes that the motions must be denied.

I. BACKGROUND

After the attacks of September 11, 2001, and the anthrax incidents of the same year, Congress turned its attention to Capitol area security. One of Congress's responses was to commission a report from the General Accounting Office ("GAO") on the desirability of merging the police forces of the legislative branch: the LOC Police, the Government Printing Office Police ("GPO") Police, and the USCP. The purpose of the GAO report was to address what Congress perceived as the "need for consistent security policies and practices, efficient management of resources, and fair treatment of law enforcement personnel." (Pl.'s Mot. for Prelim. and Permanent Inj., Ex. A at 1 ("GAO Report")).

The GAO Report identified several benefits a merged police force could provide, including better "coordination of police activities," "centralized intelligence gathering, dissemination, and threat assessments," more "consistent responses to emergency situations," and "flexibility in staffing." Id. at 4. The report also noted that the LOC Police and the USCP had overlapping primary jurisdictions, and performed similar missions protecting visitors, congressional members and staff, and national treasures. The GAO, however, concluded that the GPO Police and USCP "would not be as close a fit," because of differences in missions and location. Id. at 6. The report concluded a merger between the LOC Police and the USCP "could enhance the overall security of Capitol Hill." Id. Following the issuance of the GAO report, Congress passed the United States Capitol Police and Library of Congress Police Merger Implementation Act of 2007, Pub. L. No. 110-178, 121 Stat. 2546 (2008) ("Merger Act").

The Merger Act provides that LOC Police will merge into the USCP by October 1, 2009. See Merger Act, en passim. According to the FOP and Myers, two differences between the USCP and the LOC Police give rise to this suit: the composition of their workforces and the fact that the USCP has a mandatory retirement age for its officers whereas the LOC Police does not. Regarding workforce composition, the FOP and Myers allege that the membership of the LOC Police is 87% Black rank-and-file officers and 59% Black supervisory officers, whereas the membership of the USCP is 29% Black rank-and-file officers and 16% Black supervisory officers. Regarding mandatory retirement, USCP officers are eligible for an annuity "after becoming fifty years of age and completing twenty years of service." 5 U.S.C. § 8336(m). USCP officers who are "eligible for immediate retirement under section 8336(m) [must retire] from the service on the last day of the month in which [they turn fifty-seven] years of age or complete[] [twenty] years of service if then over that age. 5 U.S.C. § 8335(c). The Board may, however, "exempt such [officers] from automatic separation under this subsection until that member becomes [sixty] years of age. Id.

Through the Merger, all LOC Police officers and civilian employees will be transferred to and become employees of the USCP. See Merger Act § 2(a)(1)-(2). Upon transfer to the USCP, only certain LOC officers will be eligible to become USCP officers. Specifically, the Merger Act provides:

A Library of Congress Police employee shall become a member of the Capitol Police on the employee's transfer date if the Chief of the Capitol Police determines and issues a written certification that the employee meets each of the following requirements:

(i) Based on the assumption that such employee would perform a period of continuous Federal service after the transfer date, the employee would be entitled to an annuity for immediate retirement under section 8336(b) or 8412(b) of title 5, United States Code (as determined by taking into account paragraph (3)(A)), on or before the date such employee becomes 60 years of age.

(ii) During the transition period, the employee successfully completes training, as determined by the Chief of the Capitol Police.

(iii) The employee meets the qualifications required to be a member of the Capitol Police, as determined by the Chief of the Capitol Police.

Merger Act ยง 2(b)(1)(A). LOC officers who do not meet these criteria will be transferred to the USCP as civilian employees. See id. The Merger Act guarantees that all LOC officers and civilian employees will be transferred to the USCP, whether as officers or as civilian employees; none will lose their jobs or suffer any loss of ...


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