By a 4-1 vote, with Councilman Bob Elliott dissenting, the council approved a contract with the Teamsters Local 439 that, according to city statistics, will save more than $246,801 over its three-year term.
Elliott explained his no vote by calling some of the terms “too generous,” considering the city’s expected general fund deficit of $2.2 million for the 2012-13 budget year.
Of especial concern to Elliott were leave hours given to employees and the end of unpaid furloughs.
In exchange for those benefits, the Teamsters agreed to forgo cost-of-living adjustments, be responsible for paying the full employee share of pension contributions, and pay a higher share of their health insurance premiums.
Members of the union — which include code enforcement officers, maintenance workers, animal control officers and crime scene technicians — also will be granted 40 hours of vacation time when they reach 10 years of service with the city, and at every five year milestone thereafter. That benefit, according to Assistant City Manager Maria Hurtado’s presentation, will not be retroactive.
The terms of the Teamsters contract mirrored those offered June 19 to the Tracy Firefighters Association, Midmanagers Bargaining Group, Confidential Midmanagers Bargaining Group, Technical Services and Support Unit, Limited Service Employee Group and department heads.
The city estimates that, if all employee groups adopt similar contracts in 2016 without the “givebacks,” that $3.4 million in spending would be knocked off the city’s general fund budget.
City Manager Leon Churchill said that such contracts give the city “a very reasonable chance” of balancing the budget without Measure E, a half-cent sales tax increase approved by a majority of Tracy voters in 2010 that expires in 2016.
At a glance
• WHAT: Tracy City Council
• WHEN: 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 17
• WHERE: City Hall, 333 Civic Center Plaza
• DETAILS: Mayor Brent Ives and councilmen Steve Abercrombie, Bob Elliott, Michael Maciel and Robert Rickman were present.
• For more on the Tuesday, July 17, City Council meeting, see the Friday print edition of the Tracy Press. • Contact editor Jon Mendelson at 830-4231 or email@example.com.