Section 2--National SSA Level (Level 1)
A. The parties agree that notice of proposed Administration-wide or intercomponent changes will be dealt with by the parties at the National level. For notification at the National level, the Deputy Commissioner, Office of Management, or the designated management representative will provide the Spokesperson, General Committee, or designated AFGE Local 1923 or Council representative with timely written notice and seven copies of the proposed management initiated changes.
B. The Union will request consultations and/or bargaining within seven (7) workdays after the date of receipt of the notice of change. If the request is made by mail, an additional five (5) calendar days will be allowed within which the request must be received by the Administration.
C. When bargaining is requested, official time will be authorized for five (5) employee Union representatives, or a larger number if needed to achieve parity with the number of individuals designated as representing the Agency for such purposes. Official time allowances will be consistent with 5 U.S.C. 7131(a) and this agreement.
D. Bargaining will begin no later than thirty (30) calendar days after the date of receipt of the notice of change.
E. Bargaining at this level will not exceed eight (8) working days. The eight (8) workday period is to include necessary travel, preparation, actual bargaining, and mediation.
F. The Administration will pay travel expenses and per diem for three (3) of the five (5) employee Union negotiators. Should the Administration use more than five (5) negotiators, the Union shall be entitled to travel expenses and per diem for one (1) additional employee negotiator for each individual over five (5) use by management as a negotiator. Employee Union negotiators for bargaining at this national SSA level need not be drawn from any particular component to be entitled to travel expenses and per diem. Payment of travel expenses and per diem will be governed by applicable law, rule and regulation.
Section 3--National Component Level (Level 2)
A. The parties agree that notice of proposed changes which affect only one national component (Field, Program Service Centers, Headquarters, Hearings and Appeals, Office of Program and Integrity Review, Data Operations Centers) will be matters dealt with by the parties at the component level. The designated management representative will provide the designated Union representative timely written notice of proposed component-wide management initiated changes.