Leggett and Firefighters Agree to "Shared Sacrifice"
After weeks of acrimonious debate over pay raises for Montgomery's firefighters, County Executive Isiah Leggett and union leaders announced today that they have signed off on a new deal.
Under the agreement, the firefighters join teachers, police officers and other government workers in giving up cost-of-living pay raises to help close the projected budget shortfall. In exchange, firefighters will receive additional personal days and their retirement benefits for fiscal 2010 will be calculated as if they received the planned 4 percent raise.
In the category of shared sacrifice, the agreement also requires Leggett and his appointed senior managers to forgo any scheduled pay raise or general wage adjustment.
"We believe that the county's elected officials should lead by example," said John Sparks, president of the local career firefighters' union.
Leggett's salary would have increased in December by $4,000 in December to $175,000.
Back in February, Leggett said there would be no general raises for senior managers and that he too would forgo a raise, according to spokesman Patrick Lacefield. Today, Leggett called on County Council members to do the same.
Salaries for council members - who earn $89,721 - are set to rise in December based on the consumer price index. But the most recent CPI for the region was below zero, so the request may be moot.
May 5, 2009; 2:39 PM ET
Categories: Ann Marimow , Montgomery County
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