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Folsom City Council approves fire contract

The Folsom City Council approved a new contract with the Sacramento Area Firefighters, Local 522, at the June 28 meeting.

The agreement maintains staffing levels while including significant pension reform and additional concessions consistent with other city employee bargaining groups.

Under terms of the new contract, fire captains, engineers, firefighters and paramedics will pay 5 percent of their salary toward the employee portion of PERS retirement beginning July 1. They will pay the full 9 percent retirement contribution beginning next January.

“Our resident taxpayers should feel good knowing that with this agreement all city employees will soon be paying their share of retirement costs, as well as increasingly higher portions of health care premiums,” said Mayor Andy Morin. “The major provisions of this new contract are equitable with those contained in the latest contracts with other bargaining groups. Our employees understand the need for citywide reform to ensure long-term sustainability and they have stepped up to be a part of the solution.”

New Local 522 employees will be hired under a revised retirement formula, 2 percent at age 50 based on the average of three highest years of pay. The formula for Folsom’s current public safety employees is 3 percent at age 50 based on the employee’s highest annual salary.

The 18-month contract takes effect July 1 and expires on Dec. 31, 2012. Other terms include an increase in monthly contributions to active employee healthcare insurance, a cap on education pay, 12-month freeze on longevity pay and termination of longevity pay increases for new hires.

“This new agreement ensures that there will be no Local 522 lay-offs during the contract term in order to ensure continued service to the community, as well as safety for the public and staff,” said City Manager Kerry Miller. “I deeply appreciate the willingness of our Local 522 employees to join other city employees in making significant contributions to pensions and health care costs. I also appreciate their understanding that these contributions are essential for our city to maintain long-term fiscal stability.”

Tracy Randall, Local 522 Unit Representative, said, “Ensuring that any concessions made by our members would be used to maintain our current level of service to the community was a priority. This contract will protect the current response times in the city and provide for the safety of both the community and firefighters.”

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Posted by on Jun 29 2011.
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