United States District Court, N.D. Alabama, Northeastern Division
UNITED GOVERNMENT SECURITY OFFICERS OF AMERICA, INTERNATIONAL UNION LOCAL 22, et al., Plaintiffs,
TENNESSEE VALLEY AUTHORITY and WILLIAM D. JOHNSON, Defendants.
MADELINE HUGHES HAIKALA UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
case comes before the Court on the motion to dismiss of
defendants William D. Johnson and the Tennessee Valley
Authority. (Doc. 8). The TVA operates nuclear power
facilities in Alabama and Tennessee. (Doc. 1, ¶¶ 4,
9). Mr. Johnson is the TVA's President and CEO. (Doc. 1
¶5). The plaintiffs are two nonprofit labor
organizations, United Government Security Officers of
America, International Union and United Government Security
Officers of America, International Union Local 22. (Doc. 1,
¶¶1-2). For clarity, the Court adopts the
parties' practice of referring to the labor organizations
collectively as “Plaintiffs.”
their complaint, Plaintiffs assert claims against the TVA and
Mr. Johnson for breach of contract and promissory fraud.
(Doc. 1). In their motion to dismiss, the TVA and Mr. Johnson
argue that both claims are time-barred, that federal law
preempts the promissory fraud claim, and that the claims
against Mr. Johnson in his official capacity are duplicative
of the claims against TVA. For the reasons stated below, the
Court grants in part and denies in part the motion to
12(b)(6) enables a defendant to move to dismiss a complaint
for “failure to state a claim upon which relief can be
granted.” Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b)(6). A Rule 12(b)(6) motion
to dismiss tests the sufficiency of a complaint against the
“liberal pleading standards set forth by Rule
8(a)(2).” Erickson v. Pardus, 551 U.S. 89, 94
(2007). A court may grant a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss
when the allegations in a complaint “on their face . .
. show that an affirmative defense bars recovery on the
claim.” Marsh v. Butler County, Ala., 268 F.3d
1014, 1022 (11th Cir. 2001) (en banc). When
evaluating a Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss, a district
court accepts as true the allegations in the complaint and
construes the allegations in the light most favorable to the
plaintiff. See Brophy v. Jiangbo Pharms. Inc., 781
F.3d 1296, 1301 (11th Cir. 2015).
ALLEGATIONS AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
are the exclusive bargaining unit representatives for the
security officers who work at the TVA's nuclear power
facilities. (Doc. 1, ¶ 9). Plaintiffs and the TVA are
parties to a collective bargaining agreement. (Doc. 1, ¶
10; Doc. 9-1).
February 2012, Plaintiffs and the TVA entered into a
memorandum of understanding in which the parties
“agree[d] to discontinue the current pay structure and
progression plan (within-grade rates)” in the
collective bargaining agreement “and establish a new,
four-classification pay structure.” (Doc. 1, ¶ 10;
Doc. 1-1, p. 1). Plaintiffs allege that the MOU provided that
“wages for fiscal years 2014 through 2016 would be
renegotiated in 2013, and based off of the ‘salary and
wage data from utilities with comparable nuclear security
work in the nuclear regulatory commission's region 2
geographic area.'” (Doc. 1, ¶11). The parties
agreed that the collected data would “be used as the
basis for negotiations of the basic salary rate for the
Senior [Nuclear Security Officer] position.” (Doc. 1-1,
p. 2). The parties also agreed that the “new overtime
rule and the new classification structure” would be
“considered to be modifications to the collective
bargaining agreement.” (Doc. 1-1, p. 3).
allege that in 2013 the TVA violated the MOU when the TVA
“failed and/or refused to renegotiate wages to apply
the salary and wage data for NRC Region 2, as previously
agreed, and forced the Plaintiffs to accept wages for
security officer employees that were substantially less
[than] the wages for comparable work in NRC Region 2.”
(Doc. 1 ¶ 13). Plaintiffs state that “TVA breached
[the MOU] by failing to renegotiate wages for years 2014
through 2016 based on wage data for NRC Region 2.”
(Doc. 1 ¶ 16).
Plaintiffs' Official Capacity Claims Against Mr.
Johnson argues that the Court should dismiss the claims
against him in his official capacity because those claims are
duplicative of Plaintiffs' claims against the TVA. (Doc.
9, p. 9). Plaintiffs have agreed to the dismissal of the
claims against Mr. Johnson. (Doc. 17, pp. 7-8). Therefore,
the Court will dismiss those claims.
Promissory Fraud Claim
have agreed to the dismissal of their promissory fraud claim
against the TVA. (Doc. 17 at 18). Therefore, the Court ...