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GH Twp. and firefighters union reach contract agreement

Kyle Moroney • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:16 AM

agreement on a new three-year contract.

The pact was approved earlier this week.

The Township Board on Monday unanimously approved a collective bargaining agreement with Local 4475 International Association of Firefighters.

The negotiations began in mid-September and concluded earlier this month. It was approved by the union on Dec. 7.

“The IAFF negotiating committee recognized the economic situation for the Fire/Rescue Department is not strong — and, I believe, tailored their requests in light of this reality,” Township Manager Bill Cargo said in a memo. “The IAFF negotiating committee was cooperative and remained sensitive to the financial issues being faced.”

The full-time firefighters each received a salary increase, which varies due to the wage study recently approved by the Township Board. The average increase was 4.5 percent, with salaries between $46,000 and $50,500.

The contract effects six full-time township firefighters. The contract does not cover the township’s 22 part-time firefighters.

The current labor agreement for the IAFF would have expired on Dec. 31 if it had  not been renewed, according to Cargo. However, it would have remained in effect for an additional 90 days under a grace period.

The contract identifies that the work cycle has changed from a 19-day period to a 28-day period.

Details of the agreement outline union security and representation, management rights, dues check-off, grievance procedures, discipline, seniority, layoffs, recalls, transfers, and promotions. It also includes paid time off, retirement benefits, insurance and station duties.

“The bargaining went very smoothly,” Township Fire Chief Tom Gerencer said. “It’s a good agreement for both parties.”

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