Public Information Office




510 Watchung Avenue Plainfield, NJ

November 19, 2007


Mayor Brings Party back to table, Saves City $150, 000 Plainfield – A week prior to the start of arbitration, Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs
brought the city’s negotiating team and the PBA/SOA back to the table. The teams initially hit an impasse but subsequently were able to hammer out a three year contract (1/1/071/1/09). This is the first year since 1999 that this contract was settled without arbitration, and has eliminated the cost of arbitration expenses. The last arbitration settlement with the PBA resulted in a four percent (4%) increase in 2005 and four point two five percent (4.25%) in 2006. The current tentative agreement settles the salary increases at three point seven five percent (3.75%) for each year of the contract. In addition, this settlement also provides that the City and the PBA share in the savings that will result from the PBA giving back their second prescription plan that was awarded some years ago. Through this sharing agreement the city will recognize savings of approximately one hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($150,000) per year in insurance premium cost. In exchange, officers will receive an increase in longevity payments. These payments made to officers based on the time in service to the city as follows: From From From From $500 to 2% of annual salary (10+ years of service) $1250 to 3% of annual salary (15+ years of service) $1600 to 5.25% of annual salary (20+ years of service) $2000 to 5.25% of annual Salary (25+ years of service)

The elimination of the prescription plan represents a major gain in the city’s efforts to control spending. Prescription costs over the last few years have significantly increased to the tune of double digits and are projected to continue at a rate that doubles current inflation rates. Although the projected increase in the contract over the next three (3) years is one point three million dollars ($1.3), the actual increase will be eight hundred and fifty eight thousand dollars ($858,000) since four hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($450,000) is currently budgeted as prescription insurance. This saving is doubly important in that it represents a permanent, long term saving for the city. PBA President Andre Crawford had this to say: “I have a great deal of respect for the Mayor and her administration for the way they handled these negotiations. They did not try to strong arm us as previous administrations had done but seemed genuinely determined to find a common ground which would satisfy everyone. We are satisfied with this tentative agreement and are happy that we were able to get to this point without arbitration and within the same year that the contract came up for negotiation. The last time this happened was in 1999. I remember Mayor Robinson-Briggs making this promise as a part of her campaign agenda and we are truly gratified to see that she is a lady of her word.”