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Christopher J. Watt Obtains Favorable Decision in Collective Bargaining Agreement Grievance


The Civil Service Employees Association, Inc. (the Union) filed a grievance against the City of Glens Falls (the City) claiming that the City violated its collective bargaining agreement (CBA), specifically Article 18.5, in failing to appoint a union employee a temporary upgrade. Under the CBA, the grievance was designated to be heard and resolved before an impartial Arbitrator. Christopher J. Watt successfully represented and defended the City against the Union’s grievance.

The Grievant is employed in the City’s Water and Sewer Department (WSD) working in various capacities since 2001. In June, 2012, the Grievant’s Supervisor went out on medical leave. The Grievant claims that he was told by a City Superintendent that he would assume his Supervisor’s job position during the medical leave, which is an upgrade in title and pay (“temporary upgrade”). Thereafter, another employee was designated with the temporary upgrade. The Grievant claims that he was more qualified for the temporary upgrade and that by designating another employee he was denied his right under the CBA to the temporary increase in title and pay.

After reviewing written materials submitted, considering the testimony from witnesses on behalf of the Union and the City, as well as hearing the oral arguments of their attorneys, the impartial Arbitrator found that the Union provided no evidence proving that the City violated the CBA Article 18.5 by not appointing the Grievant a temporary upgrade. Therefore, the Union's grievance was denied its entirety.

Christopher J. Watt is Of Counsel to Carter Conboy in Saratoga Springs. He represents public sector employers in collective bargaining negotiations and labor arbitrations. He is an experienced employment law advisor providing counseling and training to business and government in the public and private sector in the areas of investigations, claims, litigation, and litigation avoidance, including Title VII, FMLA and FLSA compliance, labor strikes and picketing, and union grievances. Mr. Watt appears before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, National Labor Relations Board, New York State Public Employer Relations Board, New York State Division of Human Rights, Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board, Department of Labor, and in New York state and federal courts. Mr. Watt also has vast legal experience in the representation of clients in real estate transactions, Equine Law, Wills, Trusts and Estates, business and corporate matters, formation of limited liability companies, corporations and partnerships, and defense of vehicle and traffic matters. He is a member of the New York State Public Employer Labor Relations Association, the Saratoga County Bar Association, and is an avid horseman and proprietor of Willow Run Stable, LLC in Wilton. He can be reached at and 518.587.8112.

Carter Conboy is a Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ peer rated full-service law firm committed to providing the highest quality legal representation to its clients. Founded in 1920, Carter Conboy has offices in Albany and Saratoga Springs, New York, serving clients throughout New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, New Jersey, New Hampshire, and Florida. For additional information about the firm, visit or contact the firm’s Director of Marketing, Stacy A. Smith, at 518-810-0516 or