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City Council Approves Labor Agreement

Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist discusses the new contract agreement with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 418, which the Jamestown City Council approved Monday. P-J photo by Dennis Phillips

City of Jamestown officials in back-to-back months now have approved new contract agreements with one of its employee bargaining units.

On Monday, the Jamestown City Council approved a contract agreement with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 418, which is a unit that represents parks and public works employees.

The contract runs from Jan. 1, 2022, through Dec. 31, 2025, and union membership has already ratified the agreement. During the council’s voting session meeting, Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist said the agreement calls for employees to receive a 2.5% pay increase in 2022, 2023 and 2024, with a 2.75% salary hike in 2025. He said employees will now fund 24% of their health insurance premium in 2022, 2023 and 2024, with the rate increasing to 25% in 2025.

In October 2019, the council approved a retroactive agreement with AFSCME for the years covering 2019-2021. That agreement included a 2% salary increase for the years 2020 and 2021.

Last month, the council reached a three-year contract agreement with the Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) Local 1000. According to the resolution, the new agreement will start Jan. 1, 2022, and expire Dec. 31, 2024.

In September, Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist said the salaries for each of the employees in the union will increase 2.5% each year of the contract. Also, he said CSEA employees would start to fund 21% of their health insurance premiums. The previous rate was 18%. The union membership includes clerical staff and engineers.

The city’s other employee bargaining units include two units of the Jamestown City Administrative Association (JCAA), the Kendall Club Police Benevolent Association and the Jamestown Firefighter Association Local 137. The JCAA’s current contract will expire at the end of the year and both the police and fire department unions are currently not under contract.

In other business:

¯ The council approved an agreement with the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation to accept a grant for $6,195 for video surveillance cameras for Dow Park. The purchase of video surveillance cameras comes following two crimes that occurred at the park earlier this year.

In July, Anti-Semitic and racist drawings that included a Swastika and the words “White Power” were placed on one of the statues that is a part of a tableau recognizing the Underground Railroad movement and its ties to the city. One of three tableau statues had previously been stolen in May.

Anyone with any information regarding the vandalism or theft is asked to call the Jamestown Police Department at 483-7537 or the anonymous tips line at 483-8477.

¯ The council tabled accepting the Chadakoin River Strategic Business Plan during the meeting. The Jamestown Planning Commission needs to approve the plan prior to the council. The commission is slated to vote on the plan during its Tuesday, Nov. 16, meeting.

Before the council meeting, a public hearing was held on the plan. Earlier this month, officials from several different entities led a tour of the Chadakoin River Basin behind the National Comedy Center along the Greater Jamestown Riverwalk to detail how the plan will attract more people, money and economic development to downtown Jamestown.

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