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Lockport Town Board ratifies agreements with Teamsters, CSEA

LOCKPORT – The Town Board on Wednesday ratified a seven-year contract with the Teamsters union, as well as a health insurance agreement with the Civil Service Employees Association.

The deal with the 18 Teamsters members is retroactive to the start of 2014 and offers annual raises of 2 to 2.5 percent, depending on a worker’s job title and position on the pay scale, Councilman Paul W. Siejak said.

Current employees will be paid 45 cents per hour in retroactive raises for 2014 and 2015. Pay will rise by an additional 50 cents per hour Jan. 1, with another 50-cent raise coming in 2017. Wages will increase by 55 cents per hour in 2018, and 60 cents per hour in 2019 and 2020.

Teamsters members hired by the town in 2009 or later must pay 15 percent of their health insurance premium, which Town Attorney Michael J. Norris said was a provision carried over from the union’s last contract with the town. Older members have 100 percent of their copayments reimbursed by the town, Supervisor Marc R. Smith said.

The Teamsters represent highway, buildings and grounds and water maintenance employees. As of Jan. 1, the pay range for laborers will be $18.50 to $20.50 per hour. For motor equipment operators and water maintenance workers, it’s $21 to $23 per hour, and for the town mechanic, pay will range from $22 to $24 per hour.

The CSEA agreement shifts the 15 white-collar members into a community-rated BlueCross BlueShield plan called Platinum Standard, which Smith said will save the town an estimated $100,000 a year over the former experience-rated plan. Siejak said the town was “committed to the same scope of coverage” for the employees. CSEA members hired since 2004 must pay 15 percent of the premiums.

Also Wednesday, the board passed a motion officially endorsing Councilman Mark C. Crocker’s statement at last week’s state scoping session on Lafarge North America’s request to dig a new stone quarry on Hinman Road. Crocker, the supervisor-elect, said at the meeting that the town won’t consider rezoning the property until Lafarge meets the town’s conditions, including creation of a fund to pay any property damages to homeowners caused by blasting or other quarry operations.

Smith said action on the town’s revised electronic sign law is expected at the final board meeting of the year at 1 p.m. Dec. 30. The amendment would allow images that change once per minute instead of the current policy of limiting flashing signs to once every 10 minutes.