City to Unions: Pay Cut Victory Premature

City to Unions: Pay Cut Victory Premature

Union officials say since Memphis City Council members didn't vote on contract impasse committee recommendations within two weeks, they get their 4.6 percent pay cut restored. But city leaders say, in your dreams.
MEMPHIS, TN (localmemphis.com) - The fight over the 4.6 percent city employee pay cut continues, but now there's a new disagreement. Union officials say since Memphis City Council members didn't vote on contract impasse committee recommendations within two weeks, they get the pay cut restored. But city leaders say, in your dreams.

The groups won't agree on anything. This issue is important, because chances are good it will end up in court one way or another - just like every big issue in Memphis seems to.

Mike Williams of the Memphis Police Association says the law is the law and his folks will get that pay cut restored.

"In accordance with the law, the ordinance, the impasse ordinance which is the law, we won," he says.

Well, not quite. It's going to cost a lot of money to get rid of that pay cut, about $14 million, says the city's CAO, George Little.

That's a lot of scratch, and the folks in charge of all that scratch, all the dough, are members of the Memphis City Council.

They agree the city charter says that if no vote is taken after two weeks, the recommendations of the impasse committee are final. But, they are also the ones who dole out the dough.

Councilman Jim Strickland explains it just means there is a deal with the mayor and the unions. It doesn't mean the city council has to pay for it. If there's no money, there's no deal; they are the ones to decide how to fund things.

Three city council members will meet with union reps Wednesday afternoon at city council. Be prepared to see this whole thing end up in court.

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