Light on the Hill: Industrial Relations Reform in Australia
The Queensland Power Workers' Association: The Story of an Enterprise Union
You will be generally aware of the factual background
of what is now known as the SEQEB dispute of February
My involvement has been as the Solicitor for a group
of SEQEB workers now known as the Queensland Power
Workers' Association (QPWA). As such I have had occasion
to consider the bundle of legislation arising out of
that dispute, including the Industrial (Commercial
Practices) Act 1984-1987; the Electricity Authorities
Industrial Causes Act 1985 ('The Causes Act'); the
Electricity Continuity of Supply Act ('The Supply Act');
and the Industrial Conciliation and Arbitration Act
('IC & A Act').
Out of the SEQEB dispute have developed contracts
between SEQEB and its individual employees. I briefly
return to this later; but for the moment it should
be said that those early contracts exist only in SEQEB
and are, save for the terms imposed by the Supply Act,
subject to the minimum standards imposed by conventional
awards under the IC & A Act.
What is QPWA?
QPWA is an unincorporated voluntary association of
about 400 mainly SEQEB blue-collar workers employed
in a range of callings. Under its rules it is open
to all employees in Electricity Authorities in Queensland;
in fact, it has a number of white-collar callings and
includes members in other supply Boards .
To put QPWA in the context of the SEQEB dispute, out
of which it grew, it has members:
- who went on strike but returned to work immediately
in compliance with the Queensland Government's Order-in-Council
of 7 February 1985, and who are thereby subject to
statutory contracts made with SEQEB and ratified subsequently
by Section 7(1 ) of the Supply Act;
- who went on strike and were re-employed subject to
a statutory contract under Section 7(2) of the Supply
- who did not go on strike and who were therefore not
re-employed in accordance with either subsection of
Section 7 of the Supply Act but retained existing award
- who, being 'new' employees, engaged after the strike,
and indeed after the Supply Act, and who may or may
not now be subject to the statutory contract set out
in Section 7(2) of the Causes Act.
Evidence before the High Court in May 1986 indicated
that of a sample of 237 persons who answered a ballot,
37 held at the same time joint membership with ETU,
one with FCU and one with MOA; on the other hand,
91 had resigned from ETU, and one each from FCU and
QPWA has been held to be a 'trade union' within the
meaning of the IC & A Act. QPWA maintains an office
in Brisbane, and is administered by an honorary management
committee which meets monthly. Regional meetings are
held of depot delegates representing members throughout
QPWA: A new style of union
A recent QPWA newsletter spelled out why it was different.
In its own words:
'Members make the rules.
Members make all major decisions.
Members make the decision when to have a secret ballot.
Members and their association have good relations
with their employer.
Members set the fees.
Members are not required to strike.
Members play a direct part in their association's
Members work for each other.
We have a good thing going, let's keep it that way
by achieving our ambitions for a better type of association,
a first for our industry and become part of history.'
The very existence of QPWA is a fascinating example
of the style an organisation could follow when the
legislative shackles binding the ordinary citizen to
the Industrial Relations Club are removed. If QPWA
is any guide, what will emerge is a democratic voluntary
organisation with regular and honest consultation
and exchange of information structured on a regional
basis so as to provide opportunity for settlement
of disputes on-site without recourse to 'head office
and free from the abuse of spurious external political
A perusal of the rules indicates that members have
bound themselves to comply with and operate as an
industrial union under, and in accordance with, 'any
and all applicable laws including the Supply Act, the
Causes Act and the IC & A Act.
Voting for elections is by secret postal ballot and
voting at general meetings may, on the request of
one-fifth of the members present and entitled to vote,
be by secret ballot.
In other respects the rules comply with the minimum
requirements of 'statutory objects' set out in the
IC & A Act, although one gets the impression that
members would have preferred to do away with one compulsory
object: 'the imposing of restrictive conditions on
the conduct of any trade, calling, business or industry'.
My client has been described as Australia's first
enterprise union. Rule 2 of its constitution achieves
that by opening membership to employees of Electricity
Authorities. That is straight forward enough. But
the real question is, where does that get you within
the system of industrial law and practice we are here
What are the rights at law, but also in practice,
of individuals or groups of individuals:
- to be a party to proceedings in Industrial Tribunals?
- to represent and be represented in Industrial Tribunals?
- generally, to have a say in the regulation of their
terms and conditions of employment?
We all know how a group of employees working in callings
over which established trade unions have been granted
coverage by the State Industrial Commission would fare
if they appeared in the Commission, either individually
or as a group, or in either capacity representing others
of the same view. The battle of the Queensland Branch
of the United Fire Fighters Union to get out from
the AWU is a case in point.
Given that QPWA has operated in the Causes Tribunal
without registration for some two years, why should
the situation be different in that Tribunal and, if
it is, is that for any substantive legal reason?
The problem arose for me for the first time on 7 February
1986, in proceedings in the Chambers of the Chairman
of the Tribunal, His Honour Judge Pratt QC, in a matter
notified by my client Association under Section 13
of the Causes Act (Section 36 of the IC & A Act).
The full-time official of the Queensland Branch of
the Association of Professional Engineers, Australia
(APEA) appeared and was granted leave to intervene.
A question arose as to the capacity of the Association
itself, being unincorporated, to appear and represent
APEA submitted that my client 'most certainly would
not have had such a right (to make the application)
in the State Industrial Commission' and did not therefore
have the right before the Tribunal; further, that if
the Tribunal had any discretion in the matter, it should
note 'that there is already a proliferation of unions
covering the industrial interests of members of SEQEB;
now the last thing we need is another union looking
after the interests of people employed by SEQEB'. APEA
also submitted that: 'it is not simply a question .
. . that Mr Carberry represents people who might be
or have been members of APEA. I think it is also relevant
whether he represents any professional engineers,
whether or not they are members of APEA...'
There we have it! The perceived exclusive right of
a registered trade union to represent its calling,
members or not, to the exclusion of a rival association
within that calling.
As it happened, APEA had no interest in the particular
matter and withdrew; unfortunately, therefore, our
exact status was not decided there and then. But perhaps
the most dramatic battle in which we were engaged in
this period was a matter which flowed directly from
the Association's lack of registered status under any
legislation and which started in the Causes Tribunal
and ended by a decision of the Full Court of the Queensland
Predominant among the privileges granted to associations
registered under the IC & A Act is, of course,
incorporation. And despite the frequent references
throughout the Act to the status of a 'person' before
the law, there are certain obvious privileges reserved
to registered trade unions. While we are all bound
by awards (Section 31), only a registered union or
an employer may apply to be exempted (Section 12(4)).
Section 32 denies to an individual person (unless a
'party' as defined)---or indeed denies to an officer
of a trade union not registered under that Act and
to any person acting on behalf of such a trade union---the standing to apply for rescission or variation
of an industrial agreement, decision and the like and
for the reopening of any reference or proceeding. As
well, an Industrial Inspector or a certified official
of a registered union can enter and inspect time and
wages records (Sections 126,136).
In pursuance of my client's instructions to obtain
'registration' I was to discover that the new Causes
Act, while picking up the jurisdiction (and indeed
the practices and procedures) of the Commission, did
not pick up the powers of the Registrar to whom is
reserved the function of registering trade unions under
the IC & A Act. He is to have regard, of course,
to the entrenched privileges of the Club; thus he may
require evidence that the applicants 'should not in
the public interest or for other good reason join an
existing trade union' (Section 46(1Xe)) and that 'the
registration of the applicants will not unjustly affect
any other industrial union' (Section 46(1 Xd)). A
tactical decision had to be made. Should my client
seek registration and coverage of callings within the
Electricity Authorities from the Commission,, where
it would be compelled under existing legislation to
satisfy the 'conveniently belong' and 'multiplicity'
tests, when the best evidence it had of why it should
go it alone was the very existence of the specialist
Tribunal which grew out of the same factual background---the 1985 SEQEB dispute? Why engage in possibly years
of litigation to get a ticket in a Tribunal in which
matters concerning our members could not be heard?
Or should the QPWA represent to the Government that
the Causes Act ought to be amended to provide a registration
procedure in the Tribunal? (I am instructed that representations
were made through various channels but, by April 1986,
showed no reasonable prospect of success.)
An opportunity to demonstrate the point arose when,
on the 27 March 1986, SEQEB refused entry and inspection
to officers of QPWA and, incidentally, to myself.
A dispute in relation to this matter was notified
to the Tribunal and my clients sought in resolution
to the dispute:
- an order that the QPWA be registered as an industrial
union for the purpose of the Causes Act; or
- a Declaration that QPWA is an industrial union within
the meaning of the Act; or
- a declaration that QPWA is a trade union; and
- a representation order empowering officers of the
association to enter an employer's premises and inspect
time and wages records.
After preliminary mention, the matter was argued on
28 April, with lengthy submissions from Mr Hartigan
QC for 13 intervening unions, Mr David Cooper QC for
the employer (SEQEB) and Mr Cedric Hampson QC for my
His Honour Judge Pratt gave his judgment on 7 May
1986. He found that he did not have jurisdiction to
register a union, or to declare QPWA an industrial
union, but said he was inclined to declare that it
was a trade union and to adopt the submissions of Mr
Cooper QC that 'the Tribunal could adopt a procedure
which would lead to the recognition of interested associations
with whom the Electricity Authority could deal on more
than a transitory basis'. He adjourned the matter for
two days to hear evidence on these points.
Judge Pratt's judgment of 7 May is the most comprehensive
statement of the status of QPWA within this new Electricity
The Tribunal had been asked to clarify the question
of the QPWA's long-term recognition and representation
and the metes and bounds of a recognised but unregistered
trade union's rights and obligations qua its members
and their employers.
Judge Pratt was of course alert to the extraordinary
nature of QPWA having, as its criterion for membership,
employment within the Industrial Authorities as opposed
to 'callings' He was also alert to the requirements
under the IC & A Act for an application to supply
a list of callings comprised in the membership or objects
of the union, as well as the localities or districts
in which the members of the union exercise their callings.
His Honour said:
'The QPWA is concerned with only one industry and
it cannot sensibly say that it is properly based on
callings when its sole criterion for membership is
not the exercise of callings within an industry but
the mere employment in any capacity within the industry'.
SEQEB's Counsel intervened, arguing that 'the Tribunal
could establish a system for determining and certifying
proper parties to represent the interests of employees
in the power industry, and could receive a permanent
Finally, His Honour found that it was 'clear that
associations which have not achieved Industrial Act
registration or which have no wish to achieve Industrial
Act registration may apply to this Tribunal for recognition'.
He went on to observe that 'the Tribunal could adopt
a procedure which would lead to the recognition of
interested associations with whom the Electricity Authority
could deal on more than a transitory basis'.
It would be an understatement to say that the TLC
unions were thrown into absolute panic by those words.
Proceedings were interrupted on the afternoon of 9
May when a panting and perspiring articled clerk burst
into the Tribunal bearing an Order Nisi of Prohibition,
obtained by the TLC unions that afternoon, from the
Supreme Court prohibiting the further hearing of the
matter, pending a determination by the Full Court of
the Supreme Court of the question of whether His Honour
Judge Pratt was exceeding his jurisdiction in suggesting
that he could set up a system of recognition of associations
outside the traditional registration process. When
the Full Court came to consider the decision, it unfortunately
fell short of analysing Judge Pratt's jurisdiction
to make such 'recognition orders'.
You will be aware that the Causes Act set up the Electricity
Authorities Industrial Causes Tribunal which was vested,
as far as the Electricity Distribution and Supply Industry
is concerned, with the powers previously exercised
by the Industrial Commission.
You may also be aware that the Queensland TLC organised
pickets outside this Tribunal and followed a policy
of boycotting it. ETU served a log of claims with a
view to obtaining a Federal award from the Australian
Conciliation Arbitration Commission---apparently in
the belief (as perceived by my clients) that Section
109 of the Constitution would operate to defeat the
no-strike, no-preference provisions of the 1985 Queensland
legislation and would reinstate the sacked SEQEB workers.
In the meantime, employees who had returned to work
and had refunded superannuation pay-outs received on
dismissal were restored to full superannuation benefits
under special legislation. Those who stayed 'on strike'
or who returned to work but failed to comply with the
time-limits imposed by the Superannuation Restoration
Act lost much of the superannuation benefits they may
have accrued over many years.
In early 1985 a substantial number of SEQEB employees,
unhappy with ETU's handling of the entire dispute,
banded together, in the face of what they saw as a
refusal by their unions to represent them in the Tribunal,
or at all. Matters came to a head with the 2.6 per
cent National Wage flow-on in November 1985. ETU's
Queensland Branch was suspended for 6 months by order
of the Industrial Court.
It is now a matter of public record that SEQEB granted
financial and logistical assistance to 239 of its workers
who engaged Mr Roly Livingstone, a prominent Brisbane
industrial advocate, to represent them before the new
Causes Tribunal and to seek awards of that Tribunal
to reflect, among other things, that flow-on.
In the event, the Tribunal handed down 9 new awards
covering the entire Electricity Generation Supply Industry
The QPWA was referred to me for advice in August 1985
and there followed a series of matters in the Tribunal
between QPWA and SEQEB, including the rectification
of certain anomalies which had arisen between conditions
of employment of 'old' and 'new' employees.
It is significant that, of 24 such anomalies, only
one needed to be set down for arbitration; it was eventually
settled prior to hearing, concessions being made by
By early 1986, therefore, with the ETU (Qld) suspended
for 6 months and, in the face of a clear TLC policy
to boycott the new Causes Tribunal, QPWA was filling
the void with respect to industrial matters in SEQEB.
It engaged in consultations with management regarding
safety issues and was able to give undertakings to
management in support of certain measures.
Indeed, in one matter referred to the Tribunal (the
'Plating Case'), ETU and MOA attended before it to
raise their usual objections to QPWA's right to be
there, only to end up supporting QPWA's positions.
In February 1986, a general meeting of QPWA's members
adopted a set of rules. It further resolved to seek
registration as an industrial union and later to oppose
the making of a Federal award in the industry.
To this end, on the 14 May, the Association, through
its Counsel, Mr J D Batch, made application to the
Full Bench of the Australian Conciliation and Arbitration
Commission, then hearing an application by the Queensland
Government and the Queensland Electricity Commission
and Boards, for orders against further hearing of ETU's
application on the grounds that (i) it was not in the
public interest, and (ii) the dispute was being dealt
with by a State industrial authority (the Causes Tribunal).
Needless to say our application was vehemently opposed
by ETU and by all other registered unions present,
notwithstanding QPWA's obvious interest in the 1985
The Commission, in a split decision, refused intervention.
Mr Justice Ludeke and Deputy President Riordan said:
'The association has failed to establish, should leave
to intervene be granted, that it would have any clear
attitude to the issues which have been raised for determination.
The uncertainty surrounding the association's position
is epitomised in its decision to seek the views of
its members on the attempt by the Electrical Trade
Union to obtain a Federal Award, and in the outcome
of the ballot on that subject. The evidence that we
have heard concerning the association's activities
did not dispel that uncertainty . . '
On the other hand, Mr Commissioner Brown said:
'For my part, I would allow them. The persons who
are members of the group or association represented
by Mr Batch are employees of SEQEB and many are in
occupations that the Electrical Trade Union is registered
to represent. Given the extraordinary features of the
dispute that has already been found to exist in the
industry in South East Queensland, I would allow this
group to be heard'.
The Commission adjourned for lunch. Not to be put
off, I attended the meeting of QPWA's management committee
and delegates then in progress over the lunch break
and returned that afternoon with an Affidavit of the
QPWA's President evidencing a decision of the management
committee to oppose a Federal award in the hope that
that might dispel the Commission's worries.
Not so. The following morning the Commission, again
by split decision, refused intervention. QPWA then
gave instructions to have this decision tested in the
High Court and, on 21 May, His Honour Mr Justice Mason
referred to the question of a Full Bench, which heard
the matter in Brisbane on 24 June.
Unfortunately the decision went no further than to
find that if we were to apply under regulation 37 of
the Commonwealth Act, the Commission would be bound
to hear us. It made no finding as to whether, in our
case, the Commission should have exercised its discretion
under Section 36(2) and let us intervene. In argument
Mr Justice Wilson implied from the Bench that a party
being heard under regulation 37 would not have the
full rights of intervention of a party granted leave
to intervene under Section 36(2) and, specifically,
would have no right of cross-examination of the witnesses
of other parties.
The Chief Justice, Sir Harry Gibbs, in delivering
the Court's judgment said;
'The Commission should, and no doubt will, mould its
procedure to ensure that the Association's right to
a hearing is given full effect'.
We returned to the Commission on 26 June and gave
evidence in support of the Queensland Government and
employer view that there ought not be a further hearing
of the ETU application for a Federal award.
However, the Commission took the view that we were
not there with full status before the Commission and
thus could not give evidence on the 'public interest'
I mention this technicality because, to complete the
picture, it was used by ETU to argue before the High
Court on 5 May last that QPWA had no interest in ETU's
appeal against the Federal Commission's rejection of
their Federal award case, as that rejection was, they
claimed, based solely on the 'public interest' leg
of Section 41(1Xd).
The High Court rejected that argument and heard QPWA
submissions. Its decision on this appeal is due soon.
ETU Federal Award Case
Against all odds, the Full Bench of the Federal Commission
decided in September 1986 (Deputy President Riordan
dissenting) not to proceed with the hearing of ETU's
application for a Federal award.
In 23 sitting days, the only evidence given by workers
of their attitude to a Federal award came from 10 brave
QPWA members. This contrasted dramatically with evidence
of ETU's failure to consult its members in a similar
In its majority judgment, the Commission, in commenting
on ETU's absence from the State arena in reliance on
the making of a Federal award, said
'however, it is not easy to understand the union's
reluctance since the SEQEB dispute to furnish its members
in SEQEB with the support that would be commensurate
with its deep misgivings about the legislation under
which they work. This would have been one way of demonstrating
that the union is actively attempting to put the past
behind it but the lack of evidence of union interest
in its SEQEB members makes it difficult to conclude
that the position will be different if a federal award
This inactivity was perhaps nowhere better demonstrated
than in relation to the decision by SEQEB management
to offer personal contracts to its employees. Management
went to considerable lengths to ensure that the proposal
was fully explained; however, the contract is in a
form requiring careful reading, and assistance to individuals
of a legal nature is probably desirable. We were told
that, apart from a general circular from the State
Secretary attacking the proposal, ETU's State Council
had not formulated any policy, nor had any assistance,
legal or otherwise, been offered to the members faced
with a difficult choice on an issue which was critically
important to their employment.
The apparent inertia on the part of the officials
of the union towards their members in SEQEB did not
sit comfortably with their professed desire to look
to the future. There was no provision to structure
an employment contract to provide set-off which may
be outside award prescription.
For ease of reference, I have included in an Attachment
the text of Section 32-34 of the November 1985 amendments
to the Causes Act, which provide exactly that.
I report that QPWA has for some time been negotiating
with SEQEB for a Section 32 contract; the responsible
Minister and his Commissioner were alerted to this
fact in conference on 17 November 1986. Unfortunately
no such contract has yet been achieved.
I have already mentioned briefly the many and varied
categories of my client's viz-a-viz Section 7 of the
Supply Act, and I said that, save for the intervention
of the February 1985 Order-in-Council and the Supply
Act itself that there was no provision to structure
an employment contract to provide set off which may
be outside award prescription.
Friends at Court?
On 27 March 1986 the Queensland Electricity Commission
(QEC) and the seven Boards made application to the
Electricity Authorities Industrial Causes Tribunal
for certain orders consolidating the Electricity Industry
awards, including those achieved by the 239 individuals---the forerunners of QPWA. QEC's industrial officers
filed a summons for directions naming their suggested
respondents and excluding QPWA. In compliance with
that application, an order on summons for directions
was issued on 1 April naming some 20 unions of employees
as respondents. It will not surprise you to learn that
QPWA was not named as a respondent.
When these matters came to the attention of my clients,
I contacted the Registrar of the Industrial Commission
(serving as a Registrar of the Tribunal) and arranged
a time for the hearing of an application to vary that
I filed material on QPWA's behalf pointing out the
assistance of the creation of the 9 awards now sought
to be consolidated and briefly set out the history
of QPWA in that Tribunal, from which it ought reasonably
to be concluded that my clients should have notice
of the proceeding in the exercise of the Tribunal's
power under the IC & A Act.
My application was resisted by the industrial advocates
for QEC who argued that my clients had no such interest
and, further, that unless I could produce individual
written authorities from each of my 418 clients I should
not be heard on the matter.
In the event an order was made by the Registrar amending
his order of 1 April by adding QPWA. I lost an argument
that QPWA ought to be correctly described in the order
as a union of employees. This example, which followed
the exclusion of QPWA from QEC-convened conferences
with TLC unions, indicates that the bastard child of
the SEQEB dispute has been an embarrassment at times
even to the Government's own functionaries.
Happily, things have improved, and QPWA is now a regular
respondent to proceedings in the Tribunal and a party
to QEC-convened conferences It is sadly not yet welcome
at Trades Hall where it is likely to continue as an
embarrassment for many years to come.
I have come to certain conclusions from the foregoing:
- It seems the events of the last few years in Queensland
have brought to crisis-point the conflict between the
(i) principle that there ought not to be a multiplicity
of representation in tribunals set aside to deal with
the regulation of the relationship between employer
and employee; and (ii) the principle that there should
be no undue constraints on free competition for the
privileges and obligations reserved (for whatever reason)
to those who represent bodies of employees within the
- The association known as QPWA has competed effectively,
efficiently and successfully within one essential service
electricity enterprise for the past two years in the
face of opposition which at times must have seemed
to be coming from both ends of the spectrum.
- It is time that we reviewed the wisdom of the apparent
lack of formality in industrial jurisdictions which
has, in my experience in this saga, been used to advantage
at different times by both sides and in the end has
only caused delay and expense.
- The traditions of the Industrial Relations Club have
grown to the point where the rights of individuals
are often ignored in deference to practices and traditions
which are more in the nature of folklore than having
any substantial legal foundation.
- There will be many impediments ahead before QPWA
can be free to operate outside the sphere of influence
of the Club.
- The question of the 'metes and bounds' of QPWA's
status, raised by His Honour Judge Pratt, has yet to
be resolved. The anticipated 'Green Paper' legislation
due for debate in August will be of considerable interest
to my clients and I ask this Society to use its not
inconsiderable clout to see that the legislation achieves
more expeditious application than the 1985 amendments
to the Causes Act have received under the guiding hand
I leave you with one final personal observation. If
the Club system cannot be defeated under the Queensland
Government, in a public essential service authority
with its own set of industrial legislation and with
what is now a co-operative and responsible group of
unions (including what has here been described as Australia's
first enterprise union), then there is no hope elsewhere.
November 1985 Amendments to the Causes Act
32. Contracting as to employment conditions.
1) Notwithstanding the provisions of any other Act
an Electricity Authority may from time to time make
with any of its employees or with any person seeking
employment with it a contract that-
i) regulates, as between the parties to the contract,
the terms and conditions of employment with the Authority;
ii) varies as between the parties to the contract the
provisions of an award or industrial agreement that
exists in relation to a calling within the employment
of the Authority.
2) A contract shall not be made under subsection (1)
unless the proposed provisions thereof are first approved
by the Governor-in-Council who:
i) may approve such provisions generally or in relation
to a particular contract, in either case for use only
by the Electricity Authority that sought that approval;
ii) may so approve provisions in relation to callings
within the employment of an Electricity Authority that
the approved provisions differ as between different
Where the Governor-in-Council has approved generally
provisions that may be included in a contract referred
to in subsection (1), any number of such contracts
may be made (by the Electricity Authority that sought
the approval) containing those provisions, and no other,
without any further approval being obtained.
3) A contract made under subsection (1):
i) shall be lodged with the registrar of the tribunal;
ii) where the registrar is satisfied that it was made
in accordance with subsection (2), shall be certified
by him as complying with that subsection; and shall
be of no force or effect until so certified.
Upon being so certified a contract shall take effect
and, subject to subsection (4), may be enforced against
and by each of the parties thereto as an award made
by the tribunal, notwithstanding the provisions of
any other Act.
4) A contract made under subsection (1) shall not be
enforceable against or by any person who is party to
it unless that person freely becomes a party to the
33. Contract to prevail over award etc.
If any provision of a contract made under section
32(1) is inconsistent with a provision of an award
or industrial agreement that exists in relation to
a calling to which the contract relates the provision
of the contract shall prevail as between the parties
to the contract and the provision of the award or industrial
agreement shall, to the extent of the inconsistency
and as between the parties to the contract, cease to
have force or effect.
34. Jurisdiction of tribunal to resolve disputes on
1) Every contract made under section 32(1) shall be
deemed to contain a provision that any dispute concerning:
the proper construction of the contract or any of its
the rights or obligations of any person there under,
shall be referred to the tribunal for resolution and
that the tribunal's decision shall be binding upon
and shall be given effect by each party to the contract.
2) The tribunal's jurisdiction includes jurisdiction
to hear and determine all matters arising in connection
with a dispute referred to it for resolution and to
make such order thereupon as it considers proper.