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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE City Council considered an agreement reached between the City of Springfield and the Southern Missouri Professional Fire Fighters Local 152, (The International Association of Fire Fighters Local 152 - the Bargaining Unit of the Springfield Fire Department). It is expected to be voted on in two weeks. Both parties followed parameters outlined in General Ordinance 6090, the City entered into collective bargaining with the Southern Missouri Professional Fire Fighters Local 152 in 2013. The City established this framework for certain regular employees of the City to engage in collective bargaining In light of 2012 Missouri Supreme Court ruling bolstering the bargaining rights of public employees unions. The collective bargaining agreement is the first of its kind in the history of the City of Springfield and will go into effect upon passage by City Council. It will expire June 30, 2017. Previously, the City underwent a process with bargaining groups known as meet and confer, which was more informal and was revisited annually. “Both the bargaining team for the City and the team representing the Springfield firefighters should be highly complimented on the very professional way in which this agreement was reached,” said Mayor Bob Stephens. “It was simply two very professional groups doing what they were mandated to do by the courts and doing it very well. I thank both of them.” “I believe we have reached a fair agreement,” said Fire Chief David Hall. “Much of this agreement reflects our current practices. Having this in place should ensure continued harmony within the fire department.” Hall explained that the agreement codified many work practices already in place, either as departmental policies or City rules. He said it clearly spells out what the City is required to provide for in terms of the employees’ work environment. That includes establishing a procedure for labor-management practice, establishing staffing levels and codifying a grievance process for employees. There is no change in leave time or retirement. Wage increases agreed upon for the current fiscal year mirror those already in place for all City employees: a total amount of funding equal to a 3% compensation increase made available to the union to allocate among its membership (as an across-the-board wage increase, funding of the Merit Steps, position-specific funding, or any combination, at its discretion). Effective July 1, 2015 and repeated in 2016, there will be a total amount of funding equal to the overall percentage change in the Consumer Price Index for all Urban Wage Earners from January of the previous year through December of the previous year, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. “We feel a fair agreement has been reached,” said Shawn Martin, President, IAFF Local 152. “This collective bargaining contract is the mortar which holds the promises of the labor group and management together.” City Council is expected to vote on the agreement in two weeks. # # # For more information, contact: Cora Scott, Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, 417-864-1009 (office) | 417-380-3352 (cell), email@example.com.