By Katelyn Sattler
The city of Obetz began union negotiations with the Fraternal Order of Police on May 4.
According to Obetz City Administrator Rod Davisson, Obetz police officers recently voted to unionize, with all patrol officers and supervisors voting to unionize with none dissenting. One officer did not vote.
The city contracted with Benjamin Albrecht with Fishel Downey Albrecht & Ripenhoff LLC to represent them in the negotiations. Albrecht, Davisson, Law Director Gene Hollins, Deputy City Administrator Mike Corbitt, and Police Chief Michael Confer are negotiating for the city.
Obetz Police are being represented by Fraternal Order of Police Capital City Lodge #9 Vice President Jason Pappas and Officer Eric Baker and Officer Joseph Jacobson are negotiating for the new contract.
When asked when he can update the public on how the negotiations are proceeding, Davisson said, “Unfortunately, the discussions are private and I can’t reveal what is said there. I can tell you that the process generally takes a few months with several meetings to reach an accord. Our initial meeting was more introductory and set the foundation for the other sessions. I expect that we will have a session every other week or so for the next three months. That’s about all I can say about the process right now and I am required to keep the discussion confidential until the agreement is done and approved by council. I am permitted to update council on the progress from time to time in executive session.”
Police departments unionize to be able to collectively bargain to determines wages, hours, terms, and other conditions of employment. The right of public employees to collectively bargain is codified in Ohio law O.R.C. 4117.10.