Court rules arbitrator can hear demoted captains issue


Court rules arbitrator can hear demoted captains issue

WATERTOWN — After more than two years of legal battles, the city’s firefighters’ union has won the right to go to arbitration over the eight demoted captains.The state’s highest court has decided to deny the city’s request to block the matter from going before an arbitrator. In a decision on Tuesday, the state’s Court of Appeals allowed the issue over the demoted captains to be heard before an arbitrator.The union had referred the move by the city as “an appeal of an appeal of an appeal” because the city continued the strategy after the Court of Appeals had ruled in the Watertown Professional Fire Fighters Association Local 191’s favor.The matter became a legal issue after the union filed a grievance in May 2016 regarding eight demoted captains. The 70-member union has been without a contract since July 2014. The contract talks became increasingly bitter after the demotions went into effect in July 2016. The eight lost about 20 percent of their annual salaries when they were demoted, while the city made the change to save about $100,000 a year.
Source: Watertown Daily Times Latest News
Court rules arbitrator can hear demoted captains issue

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