Union Negotiations - 7 Answers By The Town Manager

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Part I - Questions 1-4

Our Town Manager answered by email the questions posed by the previous post,  Union Negotiations - 7 questions for the Town Manager. Thanks Mr. Durfee!  This is Part I. 

1.  Approximately what percent of the Town budget relates to personnel costs?    

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I’ve asked my Finance Director to put together a spreadsheet for me that will answer this question. So, given a few days, I should be able to reply better to this question.

2. How many full time equivalent [FTE] workers does Norwich employ? How many Norwich FTE workers are covered by a union contract? 

I believe Norwich has 18 – full-time (Exempt & Non-Exempt), 1 – 75% (Fire Chief), 2 – full-time (Town Clerk & Assist. Town Clerk), and 9 – part-time (crossing guards, PD, transfer station, planning) employees. Nine (9) are Union (Non-Exempt) employees.

3. The Selectboard has met in executive session last Wednesday and is scheduled to met again on Sunday regarding the “Negotiated Agreement”.  Is that about the expiring contract with the union representing police and DPW workers? If not, what does that agenda item refer to? 

The Board met in executive session last Wednesday to discuss impending collective bargaining related to the Agreement Between Norwich and the Union (police/DPW members). During that discussion, the Board decided it needed to continue its discussion. They also agreed that all members needed to be present in person. The only time they could do that within the coming week or two happened to be this past Sunday – though the date/time was inconvenient for all involved.

4. The term “Negotiated Agreement” seems like a unspecific disclosure to the public of the subject matter.  Why was that term used as a agenda item description?

Simply, to economize on the number of words used for developing the agenda, “Negotiated Agreement” was used instead of “Agreement Between Town of Norwich and New England Police Benevolent Association”. In retrospect, we could’ve used “Union Contract”, but Negotiated Agreement was the term used late one night when future agenda topics were being discussed and, also, when the Board was developing its Vision/Goal Statements (last May). So, the term was carried forward when the agenda was being prepared.

Go to Part IIplease. 


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