New Castle News

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March 23, 2012

Council OKs pact with clerical staff

NEW CASTLE — New Castle City Council approved a five-year contract with clerical employees Thursday night.

The agreement, which covers 10 employees, calls for a pay freeze this year, 2 percent increases in 2013 and 2014, and 3 percent increases in 2015 and 2016.

Beginning next year, employees will pay 10 percent of their health insurance premiums. In 2016, it will increase to 15 percent. Employees previously paid 5 percent, which continues for the first year of the contract.

The cap on accrued sick days has been reduced from 240 days to 220 days and the number of paid holidays per year has been cut from 13 to 10.

Councilman Thomas Smith voted no on the agreement. He objected to the sick day provision, saying “it sets a dangerous precedent” for future negotiations with other unions. He said it is “not a standard practice” for the private sector.

Solicitor Jason Medure said the administration believes it provides a savings overall to the city. He added the contract was negotiated with the city’s Act 47 recovery team’s involvement.

The employees are represented by Construction and General Laborers Local 964.

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