File photo.

File photo.

Firefighter labor union agreement in place for next three years

The council recently passed a successor labor agreement.

At its Jan. 6 regular meeting, the Bellevue City Council passed a resolution that authorizes a successor labor agreement between the city and the International Association of Firefighters, Local 1604.

The item was listed under the consent calendar, which the council passed at the end of the meeting.

The resolution, which represents Bellevue firefighters, covers the contract period between Jan. 1 of this year and Dec. 31, 2022. The passage comes after the collective bargaining period concluded, via a provisional agreement, on Nov. 20, 2019.

Union members ratified the agreement itself on Christmas Day 2019, which in turn required the council approval that took place on Jan. 6.

The union represents some 200 employees, which, according to meeting documents, includes firefighters, captains and lieutenants.

Over the course of the contract period, it is expected the agreement will result in a city cost of about $5.2 million. That is a result of the 2020 wage increase (by 4 percent), cost of living projections through 2022 and other changes made through bargaining.

More adjustments include an increase of the paramedic premium pay by .5 percent in 2022, the 2021 addition of a 2-percent premium for aid car shifts and the creation of three new specialty leads.

In the agreement, changes to health and welfare insurance also have been made, including the removal of the medical and dental waiver rebates. The union, according to meeting documents, also has agreed to use the city’s definition relating to benefit eligibility for a domestic partner.

The meeting agenda item notes how the costs will be balanced out.

“Based upon recent history, approximately 19-20 percent of these costs will be offset by revenue from Advance Life Support (ALS) funding and contract cities,” the document states.

The Jan. 6 council meeting also saw the appointments of the new mayor and deputy mayor — Lynne Robinson and Jared Nieuwenhuis, respectively — and community comments.

The council will next be meeting for a Jan. 13 extended study session, which is after the Reporter’s print deadline.

To watch the full council meeting, go to the meeting recording online (https://bit.ly/37McH90). For more information about the agreement between the city and the International Association of Firefighters, Local 1604, go to the meeting agenda item (https://bit.ly/2Nu2tCD).


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