SAN ANTONIO – For the first time since the council elections were finalized, the city and the police union will meet to resume talks aimed at agreeing on a new collective bargaining agreement.
Less than 24 hours before the meeting, Dist. 9 Councilman Joe Krier sent an email that didn’t sit well with the San Antonio Police Officers Association.
“This stalemate has been costly. It’s created acrimony and is costing the City $1.2 million a month in additional health care costs, which we’re incurring because the police union didn’t accept the City’s last, best offer. Those are tax dollars that could have gone to street repairs and hiring more police officers,” Krier said.
SAPOA responded to Krier’s statement with one of their own, challenging the $1.3 million spent by the city to sue the unions. Some council members have suggested the city put an end to the legal battle.
SAPOA also said it has presented six contract proposals to the city.
“SAPOA does agree with Councilman Krier that these attorney’s fees are a waste of tax dollars and as such, we encourage him to join his peers in dropping the lawsuit and directing City Manager Sheryl Sculley to bargain in good faith and find a fair deal for first responders and the citizens of San Antonio,” said Michael Helle, president of SAPOA.
Krier said it was time to reach a deal that is fair to the first-responders and taxpayers.
“Starting with Friday’s bargaining session, let’s keep working until we have a deal that is acceptable to our police officers and firefighters – and is financially sustainable, without crowding out other basic services,” Krier said.
It will be the sixteenth time both sides have met since March 18, 2014.