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Police Longevity Pay Scrapped, Steps Proposed in Officers' Contract

Township reaches settlement with superior officers and expects to approve agreement with PBA

The Township Committee has approved the contract for superior police officers and is in the process of doing so for the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association Local 238, eliminating longevity for new hires and adding two steps to the pay scale.

“I’m proud of this contract,” Mayor Mark Dykoff previously said. “I’m proud of the hard work this committee did over a long period of time to get this contract negotiated.”

The contract for the Superior Officers Association Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 202, which covers captain, lieutenant and sergeant, was approved with a second reading in October. The last contract concluded Dec. 31, 2010.

Negotiations for this contract were in the works for more than three years, Committeeman Gary Quinn said.

“It’s been a long, drawn-out process,” he said.

The 2011-14 contract for superior officers contains a non-retroactive raise of .25 percent for 2011 and a two percent raise each year thereafter through 2014.

The township negotiated the contract with Dykoff, township Administrator Veronica Laureigh and the labor counsel representatives from the FOP, Dykoff said, adding that he think had a mediator been used, the township may have had to adhere to more givebacks.

Below are the wages for superior officers moving forward:

2011 2012 2013 2014 Sergeant $106,031 $108,151 $110,314 $112,520 Lieutenant $116,635 $118,968 $121,347 $123,774 Captain $128,298 $130,864 $133,481 $136,151

The new salaries for patrolmen will be posted once approved.

Longevity Eliminated

Longevity also was eliminated for new hires in both contracts. The contract for the superior officers states that all employees hired before Jan. 1, 2013, will be paid longevity increments.

In former years, in addition to employees' annual wage, they would receive longevity based on seniority. Upon entering the fifth increment of employment, the worker got 2 percent of base pay, 4 percent for the 10th increment, 6 percent for the 15th increment and 10 percent for the 23rd increment.

According to the township’s latest financial records, listed online, those with the highest figures in longevity in 2010 were Chief of Police William Nally at $13,282.20 and Sgt. Chester Jurkiewicz at $10,585.50.

“Moving forward, taxpayers can’t afford the longevity they get,” Quinn said. “Myself as well as the committee is very opposed to longevity in the contracts. We’re not taking it away from employees that are here now but we were successful in having it removed from this contract.”

2 Steps Added to PBA Contract

For the PBA contract, which has been introduced and awaits a final vote, two new increments were added to the pay scale. Currently, a new hire, without training, starts with a base salary in the $40,000 range, the same as some trained officers. Now there will be a first-year step and an academy step. The first step would be a reduced salary in the mid-$30,000 range, Quinn said.

“It’s saving taxpayers a considerable amount of money,” he said.

The settlement with the PBA also includes a non-retroactive 2 percent raise for 2011 and a 2 percent raise each year for 2012-14.

Other givebacks included in the contract were minor and administrative-based, Quinn said.

“People do deserve raises for doing good work but along the same lines, it has been brought up before, I think somewhere down the line the committee is going to have to sit down and decide to cap salaries for people in particular positions because salaries continue to rise and rise and rise,” said resident Barry Bendar, municipal chairman of the Democratic Committee. Quinn agreed.

“We know that we have to turn a corner,” Quinn said. “It’s a wide range. It varies from a 2 percent raise to a 10 percent raise. That 10 percent raise in your 25th year amounts to a very substantial amount of money. The township and the taxpayers cannot afford the salaries we’re paying now.”

James Tranz, president of the Superior Officers Association, did not immediately return calls for comment.

Keith Pearce, President of the PBA, declined to comment until the contract is approved.

The township is still in negotiations with the Communications Workers of America Local 1088.

makemyday November 30, 2012 at 11:10 AM
Police officers put their lives on the line everyday, i also have seen them be warm and caring towards town seniors in need. They deserve a decent pay. Thank you Lacey PD.
GB Shore November 30, 2012 at 12:05 PM
Is the above not "decent" pay? The guys who are out on the street everyday are the P.O.'s...not the superiors. Regardless, I think everyone realizes that there needs to be some serious reform. This is an o.k. start. Longevity is a big one...now I'd like to see things like uniform allowances etc. People who have to go to work everyday have to dry clean suits etc.....they don't receive a subsidy for that....we spend 10's of thousands for that each year...was that cut out of the contract?
topcoppay November 30, 2012 at 12:37 PM
Riddle me this...How long does it take for an entry level officer to receive maximum salary? (5 years 7 years etc) I didnt see that in the 2 steps added section. good negotiaitng with this one... "all employees hired before Jan. 1, 2013, will be paid longevity increments" how convenient ,thats means everyone currently employed by the dept..
WhyohWhy November 30, 2012 at 01:41 PM
I am not saying that Police officers don't put their lives on the line everyday, but you have to put this is perspective. What is the most dangerous thing a Lacey cop has done in the last 6 months? Drug bust? DUI stops? Responding to a Walmart shoplifting call? Granted anyone of those could turn bad. In todays economy, to me, anything over 50K a year is a decent pay! Why can't police raises go my merit like a teachers salary? AND GB Shore.... Ummm the Superiors ARE out on the road as well, I've seen them. Just saying....
O C Tim November 30, 2012 at 02:12 PM
George I want Obama to no allow corp golf memberships to corps who receive govt tax breaks and subsidy it drives up the cost of gas come on Georgie we know you voted for Quinn and Dycoff you know the guys behind this contract you want real change and saving at the PD? Implement Le Telliers plan instead of giving raises hire more PO
Ronald Fletcher Stephensen November 30, 2012 at 03:47 PM
ONE COMMENT !! HOW MUCH WOULD IT TAKE FOR YOU STAND IN FRONT OF A SUSPECT WITH A WEAPON ? HOW MUCH ?? IF THIS SHOULD HAPPEN, GOD FORBID, NOT KNOWING IF YOU EVER WOULD SEE YOUR LOVED ONES AGAIN, WELL HE OR SHE EARNED IT !!! AND MORE !! I T CAN HAPPEN ANYTIME,ANYWHERE ! THERE LIVES ON LINE 24 /7,, YOU CANNOT PUT A PRICE ON YOUR LIFE ! THINK DRUG DEALERS DON'T HAVE WEAPONS ! TRANSITS DRIVING THRU TOWN,, LIST GOES ON AND ON ! PROUND OF ALL OF THEM !! BEACHBUM !!!!
GP1234 November 30, 2012 at 07:23 PM
Sad day. The police went to the table at a disadvantage...they already have to pay an additional 1.5% into their pension...which Christie "promised" to repair the pension system. The money that was supposed to go to repair the already broken pension system...was diverted and went to municipal relief...BACK TO THE TOWNS. They are now also paying a good bulk of their benefits... AGAIN MORE MONEY BACK TO THE TOWNS. What are the wonderful people on the council thinking of doing with all the money that they will be saving...tax breaks...hiring more cops? I think not. Trust me...they'll squander our money elsewhere. You and I wont see a penny of it.
lacey voter November 30, 2012 at 07:53 PM
We are not in Newark, Camden, Patterson..Now these officers put their lives on the line every day..Our officers sit and talk on the phone for the entire shift
GP1234 November 30, 2012 at 08:13 PM
Right...two towns that you mentioned are out of control. The other one wont have a police department very soon. I can walk down the street...and not fear that I will get mugged or shot. When I call the police...I get professional treatment, and and exceptional response time. Lacey Police must be doing something right, other than talking on the phone...
O C Tim November 30, 2012 at 08:45 PM
Longevity? Since the Tc doles out the contracts just whom do you think gave out Longevity in the first place?
lacey voter November 30, 2012 at 09:18 PM
They talk on the phone all day because there is nothing life threatening going on.These guys would not last 1 weekend in either city I mentioned..If they would get off the phone, stop taking 2 hour lunches they could concentrate on the drug problem in this town..Oh GOD< that would entail real police work..They are ticket writers. THats it
GP1234 December 01, 2012 at 12:23 AM
Well...you know what they say about opinions...and most of what has been posted on here are opinions from uneducated, uninformed, and clearly bitter people that have no clue what they are talking about.
Linda Russo December 01, 2012 at 12:23 AM
Sorry you are wrong lacey voter. I worked as a dispatcher there 25 years and believe me I tell you they answer the calls for service, render aid to sick people, answer every call, when I say every call they went even it was insignificant and also generator their own calls by stopping motor vehicles for violations, unregistered, suspended license, warrants etc. They deserve it and so do the dispatchers. They put up with a lot of crap from the public. Former Dispatcher happily retired.
PattiS December 01, 2012 at 07:01 AM
My husband worked for a municipality for 33 years. He traded a much higher private sector salary for health insurance benefits for his family and a decent retirement. So... If you look at good old market theory, and classic contract theory, how much are taxpayers going to have to pay these people to fund "market" wages and the benefits that are being taken away? You can't have it both ways. And last time the Township got cheap with its employees, doing furlough Fridays, it COST money.
PattiS December 01, 2012 at 07:03 AM
And while I'm at it ask yourselves this: If you think public employees make too much, with great benefits, ask yourself this: am I making too little? Didn't I lose that salary or more, and the same benefits, in the last few years??? Please - aim at the right enemy!
lacey voter December 01, 2012 at 01:34 PM
Thank you Linda..You verify my comment..LPD does not put their lives on the line every day
GP1234 December 01, 2012 at 04:56 PM
Lacey Voter...here's a question for you...do you just impuslively post what comes to mind without thinking? There's no factual basis to anything that you post. I've attached a few links to some drug and burglary arrests that I'm certain that you overlooked before you posted...all were found right here on the Lacey Patch site... http://lacey.patch.com/articles/police-repeat-offender-swallowed-narcotics-while-resisting-arrest http://lacey.patch.com/articles/lacey-inn-resident-charged-with-dealing-drugs-assaulting-cops http://lacey.patch.com/articles/ocean-gate-man-found-on-church-property-charged-with-drug-offenses http://lacey.patch.com/articles/11-arrested-in-rash-of-lacey-burglaries Clearly none of these could have happened, because ALL the Lacey Police were talking on their phones the entire shift, taking two hour lunches, and writing tickets. Exactly how does your foot taste? If you are so unhappy with the way that the police are doing their job, move. Go to a town like Camden, Newark, or Paterson. My bet..YOU...wouldn't last there for a week. It amazes me how much people b@$^h when they have it good. And Thank you Lacey Voter..You verify my comment..
Linda Russo December 01, 2012 at 05:41 PM
You can't predict what can happen when an officer goes into a situation that is volatile. It can happen, but we hope it doesn't happen. Lacey Voter you think because an officer doesn't die in the line of duty the job isn't dangerous. Ignorance is Bliss.
Tom December 01, 2012 at 07:51 PM
@LindaRusso - LaceyVoter is ignorant as he is sitting in a bomb shelter typing away with his right to free speech and hiding under some screen name, way to afraid to say who they really are. Guess free speech means you can hide in your mothers basement and solve all the worlds problems.
Lou December 03, 2012 at 11:09 PM
GP1234,I could not have said it any better. Lacey Voter is just another person the wanted to be a cop, but didn't make it. Police Officers don't get paid for what they do, They get paid for what thay might have to do.
GP1234 December 04, 2012 at 08:25 PM
Not sure if thats the case, but the bottom line is unless you have something useful to add to a conversation...dont. I can scroll down the comments, and as I said before, a majority are opinion. I posted facts...and very good facts. There are alot of things going on behind the scenes in Trenton that not too many people know about...or probably care about, which is why I again said they went into the negotiations at a disadvantage. This police department is severely understaffed. Now Chief Nally is retiring. We are in need of officers. The actual cost to run the police department is pennies on a dollar for a taxpayer. If that means that I am going to pay an additional $20 or $30 throughout the year so be it. Your family and my family is safe. Try to put a dollar amount on a life...or safety. Now I am waiting for some yahoo to dispute my post and say that there is no..."serious crime" in Lacey, and there is no need to hire officers. I would reply with this, your head is in the sand and you are clueless as to what actually goes on. I read the paper, and I see arrests being made. That means that the officer's are out there doing their job (with what they have). This makes Lacey Twsp, a desirable place to live. I am hoping that the correct people carefully read this post...and pay attention to what I have written, and we see more officers out there.
O C Tim December 04, 2012 at 09:00 PM
A salary cap is needed for the taxpayers sorry folks dont like the pay feel free to find another job
GP1234 December 04, 2012 at 09:32 PM
Please read my post above...the savings isn't much if anything. The average taxpayer wouldn't see much of a change in their bill if there was a cap as you suggest. Or are you suggesting a cap on the hundreds of thousands of dollars that the Lacey Township taxpayer is obsorbing for legal fees for the furlough days? Then I would agree...

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