County Executive Announces New Tentative One-Year Agreement With Workforce for 2016
June 23, 2014
Casey Slaughter Becker, Office of the County Executive 608.267.8823 or cell, 608.843.8858
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced today he has successfully negotiated a tentative agreement between the county and its largest employees union for 2016 that continues the county’s tradition of working with its employees through collective bargaining.
Pending ratification and final approval by the Dane County Board this week, the agreement will include a focus on workplace diversity, a modest wage increase for workers, and will help control the county’s long-term health insurance premium costs.
“Dane County’s employees work hard to deliver critical services to our residents every day – from keeping our communities safe to taking care of the most vulnerable among us,” said Parisi. “We are proud to partner with them once again and provide an example of how collective bargaining works in Dane County.”
The county’s union workforce has worked with the County Executive to find nearly $4 million in savings in the past three years through voluntary leave, wage reductions, and furlough days to assist with budget challenges and help protect funding for the vital services county government provides.
“The vast majority of Dane County citizens support collective bargaining and quality public services. This agreement shows the wisdom of working together and honors Dane County values,” said Shannon Maier, president of the joint council of AFSCME locals 705 and 720.
The agreement includes the creation of a joint labor/management committee that will work to increase minority recruitment and retention in the county’s represented workforce – a key focus of the County Executive, County Board, and labor leaders.
“I’m pleased that we could negotiate an agreement that improves wages and respects workers,” said County Board Chair Sharon Corrigan. “Our workforce has helped us through difficult budget times – I’m glad we could recognize their contribution to the well-being of the residents of Dane County.”
The agreement also provides employees with a modest raise in 2016 of .22 cent/hour, paid for in part by savings the county will receive from changes in the employees’ health insurance plans. The parties maintain flexibility to revisit additional wage adjustments in August of 2015, depending on the county’s budget outlook at that time.
Dane County is one of the few units of government that has maintained a positive collective bargaining relationship with its employees following the restrictions of Act 10.
The county’s workforce is currently operating under an existing contract through 2014. A one year agreement for 2015 was approved last year following successful negotiations between the County Executive and the county’s union workforce.
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