Fairbanks City Hall

The Patrick B. Cole City Hall is seen Wednesday, June 17, 2020, in downtown Fairbanks. Caitlin Miller/News-Miner

The Fairbanks City Council will vote on Monday to increase salaries for deputy chief, lieutenants and 29 city employees who are members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

With the old contracts with the IBEW and the Public Safety Employees Association expiring at the end of 2020, the city has negotiated the new contracts that will last from 2021 to the end of 2023.

If approved, the new IBEW contract will set the yearly 1.5% salary increase for the city employees who are a part of the union. These employees occupy various positions with the city, from several engineers and accounting specialists to environmental manager, fire chief controller, legal secretary and more.

The city will need to amend the 2021 operating budget to include the increased expenditures of $54,180 suggested by the contract.

“There are also working rules that change with the contracts, not just monetary changes,” Teal Soden, city communications director, wrote in an email to the News-Miner.

As for the agreement with the PSEA, several employees will have an increase in salaries and benefits they receive. The deputy chief will have an increase of about $2,500 in 2022 and 2023. The salaries and benefits for the four lieutenants will increase by about $2,300 in those years.

“It’s important to note that while the base pay for the PSEA lieutenants sees an increase in the new contract, there will be savings for the city because there will be no overtime,” Soden wrote.

She explained that the lieutenants will still be working over 40 hours when the job calls for it, but overtime wages will not be paid as part of their contract. Instead, they will now be salaried and earn comp time that can only be used to take time off.

“The average pay for lieutenants, including overtime, for the past 5 years has been $160,000,” she added. “The new base pay will be $125,000 and there will be no overtime.”

The members of the public are invited to attend the meeting online, in person, as well as submit comments in advance via email.

Contact staff writer Alena Naiden at 459-7587. Follow her at twitter.com/FDNMlocal. 

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