The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

November 19, 2013

County board to vote on contract with union

BY BRIAN L. HUCHEL bhuchel@dancomnews.com
The Commercial-News

---- — DANVILLE — Vermilion County Board members will vote on the county’s most recent union agreement as part of a special meeting scheduled for Wednesday.

Members of the judicial and non-judicial union represented by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 21 voted last week to approve a contact proposal from the county. It was the second contract proposal, with the first voted down by the membership in mid-September.

Assistant State’s Attorney Bill Donahue said the agreement — if approved by the board — is a four-year contract intended to increase wages specifically for lower paid employees. The first year of the contract is the current fiscal year, which began December 2012

Vermilion County Board Chairman Gary Weinard said he wanted to approve the contact now since it begins in this fiscal year.

“I think it’s a good contact for the county and I think it’s a good contract for our employees,” he said, adding he doesn’t anticipate a problem in passing the contract agreement.

The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday on the second floor of the Courthouse Annex, 6 N. Vermilion St.

Under the contract terms, Donahue said union employees making at or under $20,000 will get $1,000 added to their wage base for the first year. The same employee group will receive $1,000 added to their base for the second year as well and $750 added to the base in the third year.

Employees making more than $20,000 will get $750 added to their wage base in both the first and second years and $500 in the third year, according to Donahue.

In the fourth year, all employees will have $500 added to their base wage. Per the contract, all employees will receive a $500 retroactive wage check.

Donahue noted that probation officers will have a slightly different pay scale.

Aside from wages, longevity — a lump sum payment that workers received at the end of the calendar year — will be eliminated. Donahue said what each employee has due to them will be added to their base wage. Personal days will be ratcheted down to a standard of eight for all employees. And this year will mark the last that employees are paid for unused personal days.

Also at Wednesday’s meeting:

Weinard will ask board members to declare an emergency situation for the county building at 123 N. Hazel St.

The building — the former Modern Machines building the county purchased in December 2010 — houses the county’s building and grounds department as well as the coroner’s office and some additional county equipment.

Weinard said the emergency situation, if granted, will allow him to bypass the bid process and bring in Century Roofing, which completed work on the Vermilion County Courthouse roof during the summer.

Weinard said the price of the work is expected at $35,000.

Board members will vote on a contract with Fidlar Technologies and the county recorder’s office.

The contact is to digitize 20 years of data from the recorder’s office.

The contact was on the agenda for the county board in September when it was removed by Recorder Thomas O’Shaughnessy. Weinard said O’Shaughnessy has since done more research and hopes to get the contract approved in this fiscal year because he has the money for it in his office’s budget.