City Beat Blog

Monday, Dec 09 2013 05:19 PM

Council to consider small raises for police

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Bakersfield Police cars are shown in a file photo.

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BY THEO DOUGLAS Californian staff writer tdouglas@bakersfield.com

Bakersfield Police Department officers and detectives will get small pay raises but be responsible for more of their own pension contributions according to a proposed labor contract the Bakersfield City Council will consider Wednesday.

If approved by the council and the Bakersfield Police Officers Association, the one-year contract from July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014 would be just the second labor agreement the two entities have reached in 6 1/2 years.

Related Info

The Bakersfield City Council meets at 5:15 p.m. at City Hall council chambers, 1501 Truxtun Ave. Meetings also may be viewed live on cable channel KGOV. Past meetings can be viewed at http://tinyurl.com/qfatap5.

The first contract, which covered July 1, 2007 through June 30 of this year, was approved March 6 and ended a protracted negotiation period with three 3 percent pay raises, the first retroactive to Dec. 19, 2011, the second to July 2, 2012 and the third beginning July 1, 2013 despite the contract's expiration.

The second agreement is reportedly the subject of a BPOA ratification meeting Tuesday morning.

It would give "all unit members," including police officers, senior police officers, training officers and detectives, a "half of 1 percent" raise effective Dec. 16.

Bakersfield police detectives would get an additional 1.8-percent raise retroactive to Oct. 21.

However, the new contract would require all members hired before Jan. 1, 2011, and who have been with the city for more than five years, to contribute half of 1 percent toward their own pensions.

The cost to the city is $199,606 for the half-percent raise, and $120,500 for the 1.8-percent raise, although the financial impact will be reduced by a savings in pension costs of $126,530.

"After so long going without a (Memorandum of Understanding), to have a positive working relationship, it's a positive for both sides," said Bakersfield's Human Resources Manager Christi Tenter, referring to BPOA's six years without a contract.

BPOA President Todd Dickson did not respond to requests for comment.

In other business, the council will consider not calling for competitive bids and spending no more than $375,000 to "cover costs" for the emergency repair and temporary replacement of the ice chiller system at Rabobank Arena.

The chiller failed some time around Nov. 17, prompting an unforecasted thaw in the frozen surface that's home ice to the Bakersfield Condors.

Public Works Director Raul Rojas authorized Peterson Cat Power Systems to install and rent a portable 300-ton ice chiller, at a cost of $19,000 per month, while workers repair the existing chiller.

Rojas said repair work is ongoing, but should take at least another three weeks.

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