The Pasadena City Council unanimously approved multi-year labor agreements with its frontline public safety personnel Monday evening.
The agreements with the Pasadena Firefighters Association (PFFA) and the Pasadena Police Officers Association (PPOA) will provide the City’s police officers and firefighters base pay increases of 4.5% each year in the first two years of the contracts, followed by a 4% increase in the third year and a 2% increase in the fourth and final year.
The votes were part of the Council’s Consent Calendar, which groups various agenda items for a single vote.
“I am delighted the City successfully negotiated labor agreements with our public safety personnel who work so hard for the community and sacrifice so much to keep us safe,” says Mayor Victor M. Gordo said Mayor Victor Gordo in a statement following the vote.
Pasadena City Manager Miguel Márquez added, “I am grateful for the expertise and professionalism that our firefighters and peace officers display every day in the work they do for our community and for the thousands of people who visit us every year.”
Representatives of both the Police and the Fire Departments lauded the vote.
“The Pasadena Police Officers Association is pleased that the City of Pasadena recognizes the importance of remaining competitive in the labor market. This wage increase will place Pasadena Police Department in a better position to attract and retain its valued employees,” says PPOA board member Cpl. Irvin Myles.
PFFA president Garrett Madrigal said the Firefighters Association is honored to sign this contract with the City.
“We appreciate the value the City has placed upon public safety. PFFA also feels that this contract recognizes the dedication our members have shown every day to the citizens of our community, especially during this pandemic.”
The City of Pasadena engages in labor negotiations—also known as collective bargaining—with its employee associations in order to establish the terms, wages and working conditions of employment. The results of these negotiations are written agreements, otherwise referred to as memorandums of understanding (MOUs), reached between the City and its employee associations.
Most recently, police officers received a salary increase of 0.5% in July 2021 as part of an MOU that expired on March 30, 2022. Firefighters received a 2.25% increase in November 2021 as part of an MOU that will expire on Dec. 31, 2022.
The new salary increases will occur retroactively for pay periods that began October 10, 2022, and continue through June 30, 2026.
A 4.5% raise became effective on October 10, 2022; with an additional increase of 4.5% with the July 1, 2023 pay period; a 4.0% increase effective in the July 1, 2024 pay period, and a 2.0% pay increase in the pay period of July 1, 2025.
There will also be an increase in Advanced POST Certificate Pay of 2.0%, beginning July 1, 2023, and another 2.0% increase on July 1, 2025.
Unit members assigned to the Special Investigations Section (SIS) special assignment will also receive a 5% increase in base pay.
The MOU will also provide unit members the option to receive compensatory time off at the applicable rate, in lieu of pay for time spent on-call for court or in court, and will increase the rate of stand by/on-call pay.
Life insurance coverage for officers will be doubled from $50,000 to $100,000, and dental coverage will be increased to cover 100% of family-level PPO plans.
Tuition reimbursement will also increase to $2,000 annually—from $850 and $1,000—for all unit members.
According to City documents, multiple law enforcement agencies in the Southern California region, including Beverly Hills, Culver City, Glendale, Inglewood, Irvine, and Santa Monica have also provided substantial wage increases to their sworn police officers and offered lateral transfer bonuses of up to $40,000 in response to increasing difficulties with the recruitment of new officers and the retention of existing personnel.