Reynoldsburg, union still not in agreement on pay

Negotiations for a pay raise between unionized Reynoldsburg employees and the city are going back to the drawing board.

At the Oct. 6 special city council meeting, members rejected an ordinance that would authorize the city to give the 18 employees a 3.5-percent raise for 2006, and a 3-percent raise each for 2007 and 2008.

The city had offered a 2-percent raise each year, Reynoldsburg Mayor Brad McCloud said.

After failing to come to an agreement on pay raises for the three years, both the city and the union presented their cases to the state employment relations board.

"After listening to both sides, it issued a report or recommendation on all wages," McCloud said.

The recommendation, also called a fact finder, agreed with the union’s request.

"Under the current financial state, I can’t under good conscience accept the fact finder report," McCloud told council members before they voted to reject the ordinance.

Non-unionized employees were given a 3-percent raise in 2006 and 2007, and a 3.5-percent raise in 2008.

However, because of the current state of the economy, McCloud said it would create a financial impact on the city to honor the union’s current request.

The 18 employees from the street department, parks and recreation department and the water department formed the union in 2006.

The union’s spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

"The immediate next step is to let the dust settle," McCloud said.

At some point in the future, he said, the city will make a "last best offer," but McCloud said he is uncertain what the terms of that offer will be.

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