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No raises for police

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Vivian Moon View Drop Down
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Joined: May 16 2008
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    Posted: Apr 09 2015 at 4:48pm

Posted: 3:23 p.m. Thursday, April 9, 2015

No raises for police supervisors and patrol officers

Fact-finder says Middletown police union should accept one-time bonus

By Ed Richter

Staff Writer

MIDDLETOWN  

    Middletown police supervisors and patrol officers won’t be getting a raise in the final year of their contract.

    A State Employee Relations Board fact-finder ruled Monday in favor of the city of Middletown in a wage re-opener with two police bargaining units represented by the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 36.

    Middletown City Council approved the fact-finder’s report and recommendation after a short executive session.

    The police unions were seeking a 3 percent across-the-board raise, retroactive to Nov. 1, 2014, for the final year of their three-year contract, which expires Oct. 31. Fact-finder Philip H. Sheridan Jr. recommended the city offer, and the police bargaining units accept, the $1,000 presented to all other city employees under the Performance-Based Compensation program.

    The unions argued that they went the first two years of the contract without a wage increase and that the city had the ability to grant the raises because of increased revenue through delinquent income tax collections, increased tax collections from the public safety levy, significant private development, elimination of some police positions, spending cuts and a healthy carryover from 2014. They said wages of the Middletown bargaining units were below average when compared with similar bargaining units in other communities.

    However, the city countered by offering a zero percent increase. City officials said they have been prudent with finances as Middletown lost revenue as a result of the recession, reduction of local government funding and the estate tax, population reduction, declining property values, cost of living increases and a ratings downgrade from Moody’s Investor Services.

    In the fact-finder’s report, City Manager Doug Adkins told Sheridan that Middletown continues to face a number of problems such as deferred maintenance, maintaining streets, sewer issues, other capital issues, and blighted housing.     Adkins said the city has had to cut spending, reducing the city’s workforce and not filling vacant positions. He said the unanticipated revenue from 2014 was used to bring the city’s gas and pension funds out of negative balances.

    The city has offered full-time employees a one-time Performance-Based Compensation of $1,000 for 2015 that is based on the city’s financial health instead of giving cost of living increases, and was a result of cost-cutting measures in 2014. The city did not offer wage increases to any of the other bargaining units or to non-represented employees.

    The report said because the police bargaining units chose to go to fact-finding, the Performance-Based Compensation was no longer being offered, and because the city believed these units had fared better than the other units.

    In his ruling, Sheridan found the city was able to pay a reasonable wage increase but did not see the uncertainty of city revenues and expenditures to support the re-opener as a substitute for a full, three-year agreement, pointing out that five months of the re-opener period had already passed.

    “A city that is flush and able to fund wage increases for its deserving employees does not cut its work force and its expenditures for city infrastructure,” Sheridan wrote. “The city’s budget process has been conservative and reasonable.”

 

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Vivian Moon View Drop Down
MUSA Council
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Joined: May 16 2008
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vivian Moon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 09 2015 at 5:18pm

Hmmm..and I thought everything was just ducky and we had a brighter future just around the corner.

    "However, the city countered by offering a zero percent increase. City officials said they have been prudent with finances asMiddletown lost revenue as a result of the recession, reduction of local government funding and the estate tax, population reduction, declining property values, cost of living increases and a ratings downgrade from Moody’s Investor Services.

    In the fact-finder’s report, City Manager Doug Adkins told Sheridan that Middletown continues to face a number of problems such as deferred maintenance, maintaining streets, sewer issues, other capital issues, and blighted housing.     Adkins said the city has had to cut spending, reducing the city’s workforce and not filling vacant positions. He said the unanticipated revenue from 2014 was used to bring the city’s gas and pension funds out of negative balances."

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VietVet View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 10 2015 at 6:09am
What about the new hiring and the promotions in the work book on the city site? The article tells us that they are downsizing, in dire straits concerning revenue and not giving out raises, yet, we read where Noah Powers III, the Human Resource Manager (or Asst. Law Director, dunno) is sending a letter to Adkins concerning a new hire or a promotion for a secretary or mechanic to a higher level requiring more money.

This type of story related to the activities at city hall always has conflicting information versus what is said in other information. Who knows what to believe from these people.

If the cops are getting nothing, wonder what the other city employees are getting behind the scene at One Donham Plaza? As time rolls on, it just seems that city hall has it out for the police and fire departments. They seem to get the short end of the stick compared to other city employees. I feel sorry for the people who work for this city. Most don't seem to be treated very well, that is, unless you're in the club.

I'm so proud of my hometown and what it has become. Recall 'em all. Let's start over.
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over the hill View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote over the hill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Apr 11 2015 at 2:41pm
We've had at least 3 new positions created at city hall. But we don't have the money for the real needs of our city. I guess they think we don't notice what's really going on. Dougie says we have cut budgets but he makes new positions. How does that equate with saving money? JMO
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