The City maintained that the reinstatement of Officer Frashour fell within this exception and that his reinstatement would violate public policy. Rejecting this contention, the ERB found that once the arbitrator found that the officer had not engaged in misconduct there was no basis for a claim that the officer had been “relieved” of misconduct.
The ERB concluded:
We have been told by the courts not to engage in a right-wrong analysis, but rather to ensure that the parties got what they bargained for- a binding decision by an arbitrator. … Although our deference to an arbitrator’s award is not unlimited, until such time as an award violates public policy as outlined in ORS 243.706(1), we are bound to uphold the award.
In this case, the arbitrator determined that Frashour did not violate the City’s policies, and therefore did not engage in misconduct. The City does not have a lawful reason for refusing to implement the award.
The ERB’s decision can be found here. The City is considering an appeal of the ERB’s order. Oregon Live: Portland commissioners Fritz and Fish join Mayor Adams, commissioner Leonard in appeal of Frashour reinstatement.