In Public Safety Employees Association, AFSCME Local 803, AFL-CIO v. City of Fairbanks, the supreme court held that a city council’s politically motivated rejection of a collective bargaining agreement is not a violation of Alaska’s Public Employer Relations Act (the Act). In 2013, the City of Fairbanks began negotiating a new collective bargaining agreement with the Public Safety Employees Association (PSEA). The mayor negotiated an agreement which received tentative approval by the city council. In August 2014, after public input, the agreement was formally passed, but a council member filed a notice of reconsideration. The notice was initially rejected as untimely, but at the next council meeting the rules were suspended to allow for reconsideration. After reconsideration, where a number of constituents voiced concerns about the city’s ability to pay, the council unanimously rejected the agreement. PSEA filed a charge with the Alaska Labor Relations Agency (ALRA), alleging that the council had not bargained in good faith. The union further argued that the suspension of the rules and reconsideration of the agreement was an unfair labor practice. An ALRA panel found that the council had acted in bad faith by “stringing out” negotiations, and a superior court affirmed this result. On appeal, the supreme court reasoned the council had acted within its procedures to reconsider and ultimately reject the agreement. Further, the supreme court concluded that there was no evidence of intent to “string out” negotiations in bad faith. The court reached this conclusion based on four considerations: 1) the council’s directives in the bargaining process were tentative, 2) the council was unaware of higher cost estimates when it tentatively approved parts of the agreement, 3) there was no evidence the council voted to reconsider based on any consideration other than finances, and 4) there was no evidence the council postponed for any reason other than reassessment. The supreme court found that the council voted to reject the agreement based on the political process alone; the court explained that without more this does not evidence a lack of “present intention to find a basis for agreement,” and therefore no violation of the Act occurred. Reversing the superior court’s decision in favor of PSEA, the supreme court held that a city council’s politically motivated rejection of a collective bargaining agreement is not a violation of Alaska’s Public Employer Relations Act.
 420 P.3d 1243 (Alaska 2018).