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City of Santa Barbara and Police Union Reach Labor Agreement

  |   by ws1    Bookmark and Share

SANTA BARBARA, CA – 10/28/2010

SANTA BARBARA - CA: The City of Santa Barbara reached a tentative agreement for labor concessions with the Police Officers Association (POA).  The agreement will provide over $945,000 in labor cost savings for this fiscal year that can be attributed to the City’s General Fund.  The agreement has been ratified by members of the POA.   

The agreement with the POA covers 137 police officers (sworn) and 47 non-sworn employees at the Police Department.  The agreement will generate a significant cost savings to the City, amounting to approximately $945,000 in Fiscal Year 2011 and $780,000 in Fiscal Year 2012, equivalent to a 5% and 4% salary reduction in each year, respectively.  The agreement will not significantly increase costs in Fiscal Year 2013.  

Specifically, the Police Officers Association agreed to the following:


Sworn Personnel (Police Officers)

Contributing 3.5% toward their PERS retirement benefits through June 2011, 3% until September 2011, and 2.67% through June 2013

Implementing 12 hours of furlough or leave without pay per year in Fiscal Years 2011 and 2012

Forgoing specified uniform allowance payments in Fiscal Years 2011 and 2012

Suspension of vacation and holiday cashouts for Fiscal Years 2011, 2012, and 2013

Salary increases in phases beginning in October 2011, amounting to 4.5% over three years

Increases to the monthly family medical benefit of $50 in 2011, an additional $50 in 2012, and an additional $75 in 2013

Non-Sworn Personnel (Dispatchers, Parking Enforcement Officers, and Other Civilian Staff)

Relinquishing 36 hours of paid holiday time in Fiscal Year 2011 and 12 hours in Fiscal Years 2012 and 2013

Implementing 12 hours of furlough or leave without pay per year in Fiscal Years 2011 and 2012

Forgoing specified uniform allowance payments in Fiscal Years 2011 and 2012

2.5% salary increase in phases beginning in July 2012

The City and POA also agreed to reopen the agreement and resume labor negotiations in Fiscal Year 2013 in the event of a fiscal emergency. 

The police officers joined managers, supervisors, general employees, and firefighters in reducing salaries and benefits to help address the City’s $9 million budget shortfall this year.  As a result of overall labor concessions, the City Council balanced the Fiscal Year 2011 budget and added funding for four police officer positions and one fire captain position, in addition to restoring numerous budget cuts affecting all departments. 

The City and the POA have been in negotiations since January of this year.  It took ten months to reach an agreement, the longest period of any labor group negotiating with the City of Santa Barbara. 

According to Employee Relations Manager Kristy Schmidt, “We’re pleased to have reached an agreement.  We wish it could have been accomplished in a more constructive, solution-oriented manner from the beginning, but it will help the City balance its budget and reduce service impacts to the community.”

City Administrator James Armstrong added, “With labor negotiations nearing an end, I greatly appreciate the help of City employees who voluntarily reduced their salaries and benefits to close a $9 million deficit this year.  Our budget problems are not over. We still face an uncertain economic climate and rising employee retirement costs. This is just the beginning of a long journey for all of us.”

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