SAN DIEGO (CNS) - With a majority of City Council members backing five-year agreements with the city of San Diego's employee unions, council President Todd Gloria Wednesday tentatively scheduled a June 10 vote on the pact.
The tentative deals, announced Tuesday, would gradually restore most of a 6 percent pay cut to employees, in effect since 2009, by reducing furlough days and lowering health care costs.
The agreements still need ratification by the rank-and-file of six labor groups, after which council members would vote on final adoption. They gave the deals an initial go-ahead in a unanimous closed-session vote, city officials said.
Gloria immediately praised the tentative agreements soon after they were announced.
"Reaching this tentative deal is another demonstration of the collaborative mindset of the San Diego City Council," Gloria said. "Too often, labor negotiations are seen as partisan battles. This city council continues to put policy above politics, and the results benefit our citizens, our employees, and taxpayers."
Most city employees would see their take-home pay rise by 1.75 percent in each of the first three years.
The pay levels have not been set for the final two years, giving five of the unions a chance to reopen negotiations on that part of the agreement while hoping the city's fiscal condition continues to improve.
Public safety employees would receive higher pay increases in the first year -- 2.25 percent for firefighters and lifeguards, and 2 percent for police officers. The San Diego Police Officers Association opted to take 1 percent raises in the fourth and fifth years of the agreement instead of reopening talks.
"I ask our employees to ratify the agreement negotiated with the leaders of your organizations so we can all continue to work together to move San Diego forward," Gloria said.
Councilman Kevin Faulconer said the "landmark" deals begin to "responsibly restore compensation cuts."
Scott Sherman Lorie Zapf will both vote to adopt the deals, the council members' aides told City News Service. Councilman David Alvarez said he was in favor at Tuesday's news conference.
The offices of Councilwoman Marti Emerald and Councilman Mark Kersey did not immediately respond to an inquiry into their stances, though Faulconer's statement said Kersey stood with him.
The city's general fund, which pays for basic services like public safety and libraries, will save $20 million in each of the next two fiscal years if the agreements are approved, according to Mayor Bob Filner.
He said about half would go toward restoring the pay cuts. The mayor's budget proposal for the fiscal year that begins July 1 used some one-time revenue to pay for ongoing expenses and shorted a liability fund, issues that would be fixed with much of the rest of the savings, he said.
Testimony continued Thursday in the civil lawsuit surrounding the mysterious death of Rebecca Zahau as her boyfriend Jonah Shacknai took the stand.
Prosecutors announced Thursday that a San Bernardino man was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison for carrying out a credit/debit fraud scheme that targeted retail stores, restaurants and hotels throughout San Diego County.
San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer met with the Mexican foreign affairs secretary Thursday to discuss ways to improve economic prosperity and infrastructure, a spokeswoman said.
A San Diego County sheriff's deputy was free on bail Thursday following his arrest by Riverside County authorities on suspicion of lewd acts with a child.
The Fred Hall Show is dubbed The Ultimate Outdoor Experience, featuring the hottest trends in outdoor recreation. Boating, fishing, camping, hunting, scuba diving and international travel with over 700 exhibits and interactive displays at Del Mar Fairgrounds.
Two more schools face threats Thursday morning in Vista and city leaders are taking new action to stop them.
Rain showers are expected to reach San Diego County Thursday, but the brunt of a big storm impacting much of Southern California will miss San Diego County and instead hit north of here.
The National Weather Service is predicting rain around San Diego County this week, potentially heavy rain on Thursday. People in unincorporated areas can get free sandbags at numerous locations to help them protect their homes, properties and communities.
The debate over dockless bikes rolled into Pacific Beach as the Town Council held a panel Wednesday night with bike and scooter sharing companies: Bird, LimeBike, ofo and Mobike.
Tieray Jones walked out of jail a free man Wednesday night just hours after a judge decided to not re-try him in the death of his stepson nearly 16-years ago.