On August 31, 2007, Partner Matt Wakefield received a favorable arbitration award on behalf of La Costa Resort and Spa. The resort began requiring restaurant servers to close their own guest checks rather than rely upon the room service order taker/cashier. The union representing the employees grieved the change in duties, alleging that the resort violated the collective bargaining agreement by combining the classifications of server and cashier without paying the higher cashier wage rate. The resort argued that it had not combined jobs and that having the servers close their own guest checks saved time for the servers and improved the efficiency of the restaurant operations. The arbitrator agreed with the resort and denied the grievance. The arbitrator determined that the collective bargaining agreement did not bind the resort to the status quo, but permitted the resort to “expand or alter the duties of a classification.” The published award is La Costa Resort and Spa, 124 LA 964, 08-1 ARB ¶4170 (Wormuth, 2007).

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