San Diego police officers will be voting Friday to ratify a contract agreement between the city and their union, the San Diego Police Officers Association.
Mayoral spokeswoman Rachel Laing confirmed that a tentative agreement was reached Tuesday night, but declined to discuss its details. Union officials also confirmed an agreement, but declined to comment on its specifics until seeing the membership vote.
In newsletters, the union has said the new contract would not affect pay raises or pay cuts for officers. The main focus of discussions in previous months has been officers’ health care plans, retiree healthcare and other programs like a deferred retirement plan called DROP.
Two sources familiar with the contract said it would allow union members to leave the city’s health care plan for one administered by the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs. The union argues that the plan would offer better coverage for less money, in part, because it’s a larger risk pool, the sources said.
On retiree healthcare, the city and union agreed to further evaluate moving to the state’s employee system, CalPERS Health, sources said. The move would first require state legislation, but the union says it could reduce annual costs.
The police union was the last labor group still in contract negotiations with the Mayor’s Office this year. If the membership ratifies the new contract, it would move to the City Council for approval.
If passed by council, the agreement would be a stark contrast to negotiations last year, which ended with the City Council forcing a contract on the union.
– KEEGAN KYLE
This article relates to: Public Safety