On May 6, 2015 I shared on these pages about my arbitration hearing of May 5, 2015 battling the city
over $76.12 owed me by the DOE.
Some quick background. September 3, 2013, the first day back, was the day I was served 3020-a papers. I had already sat though about 2 hours and 15 minutes of PD that day when I was summoned to the office. There waiting for me was a process server and two of the biggest and meanest looking school safety agents I had ever seen.
I was barely allowed to get my stuff, speak to my colleague who had given me a ride, and was shown the door rather quickly. I was in shock and embarrassed.
As explained on May 6, I never made it down to the Rubber Room Intake Center on Chambers St for various reasons. But no matter what, I was in the school and working for 2 hours and 30 minutes.
The DOE argued that I am not entitled to the pay of being at my school for that time because I failed to go to my next assignment. They feel that since I did not go, I do not get paid for anything.
The UFT argued that the DOE's argument was nowhere to be found in the contract and they cited Articles 3, 6, 20 and Appendix A of the contract.
Under testimony for the DOE it was shared that if I had only called the school I would have been given money for the subway. Wonder why that wasn't shared during the Step II hearing over a year ago.
But no matter what, it was never denied that I was in the building participating in PD and was there for about 2 1/2 hours. With that as a fact and being able to cite the contract we all thought it was quite winnable.
It wasn't. We lost.
The arbitrator found my story so fantastical that he denied me my $76.12. He said that since I had a cell phone I could have called someone. Yes, as reported before my ride has yet to enter the 21st Century and did not have mobile technology as of 2015 and the only other person I could have called (My wife) was 25 miles away without a car. Heck, the arbitrator never even asked me why I hadn't called anyone.
This was a non-precedent setting hearing. The DOE spent more money defending this than it would have cost to pay me the money. Heck, I would have even accepted a ticket for the then upcoming Who concert at the Nassau Coliseum.
I really wish I had the ability to make this stuff up. I just can't.