OGDENSBURG The unions representing the Police Departments lieutenants, sergeants and road patrolmen have 2012-13 contracts that, although settled recently, will expire at the end of this year.
Both relatively new agreements expire in eight months, and city officials could find themselves negotiating the next round of contracts as soon as this summer.
The Police Supervisory Unit that represents the departments two lieutenants and five sergeants settled its agreement last month. According to its terms, the lieutenants salaries retroactively increased 4.4 percent for 2012 and rose by 3.7 percent this year.
The sergeants salaries, meanwhile, rose retroactively by 4.49 percent for 2012 and are up by 3.82 percent this year.
The departments 20 patrol officers represented by the Police Benevolent Association received a 2.75 percent salary hike. Their agreement was reached in December.
The new contracts pay increases are significant for the sergeants because it raises their salaries further above a highest-paid patrolmans base pay.
Before 2012, according to City Manager John M. Pinkerton, the 2.75 percent raise for patrolmen negotiated by the PBA thinned the salary gap between the uniformed officers and their supervising sergeants. That discouraged patrolmen from taking exams to become sergeants and, in some cases, prompted them to seek employment elsewhere.
Five patrolmen in two years went to the Massena Police Department and the St. Lawrence County Sheriffs Department, according to Chief Richard J. Polniak Jr.
We had to fix that problem, Mr. Pinkerton said.
In the new contract for the sergeants, the 4.49 percent salary increase for 2012 takes their pay to $56,170, which is 7 percent above the top patrolmans base pay of $52,495.
For this year, the salary is $58,254, which is 8 percent above the $53,939 top patrolmans pay.
Mr. Pinkerton said the supervisory salary increases cost the police department $19,000. The cost to the city for the PBAs agreement was unavailable.