Sullivan County Legislature, Union Reach Agreement on Layoffs
Sullivan County legislators have authorized and County Manager Josh Potosek has signed a memorandum of agreement with the Laborers International Union Local 17, which represents County employees in the Division of Public Works.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and potential loss of at least $10 million in County revenues, legislators previously agreed to temporarily lay off 78 employees, allowing them to return to work when and if finances allow.
Legislature Chair Robert A. Doherty said:
Union leaders helped us avoid triggering the ‘two-men-in-a-truck’ requirement in the LIU collective bargaining agreement. Had that provision been kept, the County would have faced a $500,000 increase in expenses to man each DPW plow truck with two people instead of one. That would have forced us to make deeper cuts. I thank LIU Business Manager Todd Diorio and his team for collaborating with us to come to a mutually beneficial agreement that remains responsible and accountable to the taxpayers we serve. Without their cooperation, we would have had a much more difficult situation on our hands. We thankfully avoided that scenario
County Manager Josh Potosek stated:
Even with the promise of continuing health insurance payments and time-off accruals, it has been agonizing determining who is laid off. I’m grateful to LIU’s negotiators for their willingness to partner with us in charting the course of least pain for our employees. That remains a bright spot amidst an incredibly challenging time
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