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Westchester Police, County Agree On Tentative Contract

County Executive Robert P. Astorino (right) and PBA President Michael Hagan sign a tentative agreement.
County Executive Robert P. Astorino (right) and PBA President Michael Hagan sign a tentative agreement. Photo Credit: Westchester County

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - Officers in the county's Police Benevolent Association reached a tentative six-year labor contract this week with the county.

The deal includes employee contributions to the cost of their health care, making the PBA the fifth union in the county to agree to a labor contract with that provision, the county announced.

The agreement would run retroactively from 2009  to the end of 2014. The deal was announced this week by  County Executive Robert P. Astorino and Michael Hagan, president of the 265-member union.

The agreement needs to be ratified by the union and then by the county Board of Legislators.

The contract provides for salary increases for police officers of 3 percent in 2009; 2.75 percent in 2010; and 2.5 percent each in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014.  In addition, for the first time all police officers would contribute to the cost of their health care.

For current employees, this contribution would stop  upon retirement. For all new hires, it would continue  upon retirement.

The county said that would begin to reduce the county's substantial liability for health insurance for retirees. "This agreement is in the best interests of Westchester County," Astorino said. "This is a good contract, fair to the union and fair to our taxpayers. I thank Mike Hagan and his negotiating team for their hard work. At the same time I again call on the county's largest union, the Civil Service Employees Association, to accept a contract where they contribute to their health care costs." Hagan said the contract would bring the union current for the first time in nearly a decade.

"This agreement is the result of the prolonged, good faith efforts by both sides, and addresses important issues, including health care costs, in a way that is fair and equitable to our membership and the residents that they serve," he said. Under the terms of the tentative agreement with the PBA, members will contribute what amounts to about  $1,100 annually in health care for individuals or $3,100 for a family plan.  The proposed contract continues to include other differentials, a clothing allowance and special stipends to employees assigned to the aviation or K-9 units.

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