On March 2, 2012 Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and New York State Correctional Officers and Police Benevolent Association (NYSCOPBA) President Donn Rowe announced the ratification of the contract between the state and NYSCOPBA law enforcement membership. The contract was ratified by NYSCOPBA members by a vote of 996 to 62.
The contract includes zero percent wage increases for 2011-2013, ensures protections against layoffs, and offers health benefits commensurate with other state bargaining units. The contract provides for a 2% increase in both 2014 and 2015, 9 days of deficit reduction leave, and adjustments to the health insurance premium.
"The contract that was overwhelmingly ratified by NYSCOPBA ensures competitive benefits and protects the jobs of New Yorkers in law enforcement, all while helping to secure the financial future of our state," Governor Cuomo said. "By continuing to work together, we will emerge from these difficult financial times with a stronger New York. I congratulate NYSCOPBA for the success of the contract ratification and I thank President Rowe for his leadership."
Donn Rowe, President, New York State Correctional Officers and Police Benevolent Association, Inc. (NYSCOPBA), said, "Our law enforcement members perform some of the most dangerous jobs in New York, and they have never asked for more than their fair share. The overwhelming vote in favor of this contract clearly shows that these members also recognize New York's fiscal situation. Governor Cuomo deserves credit for acknowledging the difficult job our law enforcement members have and the valuable service they perform for the public everyday."
NYSCOPBA represents over 26,000 New York State employees and retirees from the Security Services Unit. The contract applies to law enforcement members who are not eligible for arbitration.
The agreement follows the pattern of contracts negotiated over the past year and includes:
· The agreement includes 3% and 4% wage increases for 2009-2010, the same pattern as other units; these increases were previously reserved for in the state financial plan
· A $1,000 retention bonus paid out $775 in the third year and $225 in the fourth year
· Deficit Reduction Leave of five days this fiscal year and four days next fiscal year, saving $4.3 million; the total deduction for the days comes from the retro pay for 2009-11
· Employees will be repaid the value of 4 days in equal installments starting at the end of the contract term
· Retroactive payments that are scheduled to be paid in two installments next fiscal year
· A 2% increase in health insurance premium contributions for Grade 9 employees and below, making the share 12% for individuals and 27% for family premiums; and 6% increase for Grade 10 employees and above, making the share 16% for individuals and 31% for family premiums
· A health plan opt-out so officers can opt-out through a spouse/partner to a non-state health plan
· All changes to health benefits, including premium shifts, will save $8.2 million over the contract period and $2 million annually after 2016
· A labor/management committee to review all leave taken by officers, including annual, personal, sick, workers compensation, and the manner of such use; recommendations will be made to the President of NYSCOPBA and the GOER Director for implementation
· Officers will receive broad layoff protection; workforce reductions due to management decisions to close or restructure facilities authorized by legislation, SAGE recommendations, or material or unanticipated changes in the state's fiscal circumstances are not covered by this limitation