Police union ratifies new contract


Police union ratifies new contract


Date: October 31, 2013
by: Kurt Schultheis | Managing Editor




Town Manager Dave Bullock notified the Longboat Key Town Commission in an email Wednesday that the 11 members of the Longboat Key Police Union have ratified a three-year contract offer.

Commissioners can now approve the contract at their 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 4, regular meeting.

Earlier this month, town staff and the union reached an 11th-hour agreement on a new three-year contract.

The deal struck included a pension alternative the town originally proposed in March, at the start of the stalled negotiation process.

It’s a 401(a) retirement plan offer that includes a 3% pay increase and gives officers another 7% increase in take-home pay.

As part of the proposal, the town will make a 10% contribution for employees even if they choose to put aside none of their salary to the plan. If an employee, though, invests a 3% contribution, the town will match that 3%, giving an employee a combined 16% total contribution to the plan.

The offer also comes with 2% cost-of-living allowance increases (or the same raises other employees receive if that amount is higher) in years two and three of the contract.

Earlier this year, firefighters agreed to split required Florida Retirement System (FRS) contributions 50/50, with the town’s maximum contribution capped at 13%, according to the new three-year contract. The contract also gave firefighters a 3% wage increase.

But, with FRS pension costs rising, police officers were afraid to take an FRS option that takes more money out of their paychecks once the town’s cap is reached. Officers would have to pay for costs above that cap.

Contact Kurt Schultheis at kschultheis@yourobserver.com.


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