The City of Springfield is one step away from arriving at a mutually agreeable collective bargaining agreement with the Springfield Police Officers’ Association (SPOA), Fraternal Order of the Police Lodge 22, after a meeting on Friday, March 27, 2015. Council received and accepted an arbitrator’s recommendations on the issue of wages – the one issue that was unresolved and led the City and the union to an impasse in September 2014, and resulted in a hearing before the arbitrator in January, 2015. A full summary of the arbitrator’s wage recommendations is available. In general, the arbitrator recommendations 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. City Council had the option of accepting the recommendations or instructing the parties to continue negotiations. The next step is for the union to vote whether or not to ratify the full collective bargaining agreement. If it is ratified by the union, the City will submit the full agreement in an ordinance, to be considered by City Council at its earliest opportunity. The ordinance would go into effect upon passage by City Council and expire June 30, 2017. 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 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. Below is the timeline of major events up to this point. 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, 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. An impasse was declared on the issue of wages by both the City of Springfield and the union. 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 recommendation. Both parties requested a clarification from the arbitrator. March 24, 2015 The arbitrator provided a clarification, resolving the disagreement. City staff has reviewed the recommendation and the subsequent clarification and determined the cost of implementation. March 27, 2015 City staff presented the arbitrator’s recommendation, as well as the associated costs, to City Council. Council voted to accept the recommendations. Next Steps: Union membership will vote whether or not to ratify the full collective bargaining agreement. According to union leader Mike Evans, a meeting is scheduled Monday. After union ratification, the agreement goes to City Council to consider adoption. Council decided that could be Tuesday. # # # 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.