News Flash

2015 City News Releases

Posted on: March 31, 2015

City Council approves collective bargaining agreement with police union

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Springfield City Council voted to approve a collective bargaining agreement with the Springfield Police Officers’ Association (SPOA), Fraternal Order of the Police Lodge 22 (police union) at a special council meeting at noon, March 31, at the Public Safety Center, 330 W. Scott. The meeting preceded the regularly scheduled Council Lunch Workshop. The union voted to ratify the agreement on Monday evening. The full agreement went to a union vote after City Council accepted an arbitrator’s recommendations Friday, March 27 on the issue of wages – the one issue that was unresolved last fall when the City and the union reached an impasse. In general, the arbitrator recommendations on wages include: • FY 15: A wage and benefit increase equivalent to an annualized 1.08% given to some union members effective April 1, 2015.

• FY 16: Equivalent of a 3.5% increase used for adjusting some salary steps and .827% across-the-board increase. No merit steps will be funded for union members during FY 16. Effective July 1, 2015.

• FY 17: Equivalent of a 3.5% increase used to fund merit steps. The remaining funds will be used to fund an across-the-board increase to reach the 3.5% total increase. Effective July 1, 2016.

The agreement also formalizes a number of things that are already established practice within the police department, according to Police Chief Paul Williams, and establishes a framework for additional structure in areas such as grievances and internal investigations. “All in all, a historic time for the Springfield Police Department that I was pleased to be a part of,” Williams said. The agreement also creates new rules on union activity and specialized leave, as well as new procedures for how to handle tie scores when promotions are being considered. “Gathering collectively to bargain in good faith in a professional manner led to honest, factual discussions that took place at the negotiations table – and not in an emotional public forum,” said City Manager Greg Burris. “The fact that both parties have some things they are happy with and some things they are unhappy with is probably indicative of it being a good compromise.” Background

The framework for arriving at a complete collective bargaining agreement was established in December 2013 and outlined in General Ordinance 6090, which provided for certain regular employees of the City to engage in collective bargaining, in light of the 2012 Missouri Supreme Court ruling bolstering the bargaining rights of public employee unions. City Council approved the first collective bargaining agreement in the history of the City of Springfield in October 2014, when it approved an agreement with the Southern Missouri Professional Fire Fighters Local 152, (aka, the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 152 - the “bargaining unit” of certain members of the Springfield Fire Department). Previously, the City underwent a process with all employee bargaining groups known as “meet and confer,” which was more informal and was revisited annually. Collective Bargaining Timeline

The City has negotiated in good faith, honoring a commitment per a City Council-approved ordinance, and the ground rules agreed upon by both the City and the Union to not release details about any portion of negotiations until information could be presented in open session to the City Council. • May 28, 2013

The City and the police union began collective bargaining. • Dec. 16, 2013

The City of Springfield enacted General Ordinance 6090 and subsequently entered into collective bargaining with the Springfield Police Officers’ Association (SPOA), Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 22, and the Bargaining Unit of the Springfield Police Department.This union represents officers, corporals and sergeants. • Sept. 10, 2014

The City and the union reached tentative agreement on all articles of a collective bargaining agreement, except for one issue, wages. Both the City of Springfield and the union declared an impasse on the issue of wages. • Jan. 28, 2015

Arbitration hearing was held before a mutually agreed upon arbitrator. • Feb. 12, 2015

The arbitrator issued his recommendations and, upon review, a disagreement arose between the City and the union regarding the recommendations. Both parties requested a clarification from the arbitrator. • March 24, 2015

The arbitrator provided a clarification, resolving the disagreement. City staff has reviewed the recommendations and the subsequent clarification and determined the cost of implementation. • March 27, 2015

City staff presented the arbitrator’s recommendations, as well as the associated costs, to City Council. Council voted to accept the recommendations in closed session. • March 30, 2015

Springfield Police Officers’ Association voted to ratify the agreement. # # # For more information, contact Cora Scott, Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, at 417-864-1009 or Sheila Maerz, Director of Human Resources at 417-864-1600.Download arbitrator’s recommendations on wages.

Download the full collective bargaining agreement.
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