Arbitration Lawyers Fight To Keep Lieutenants In Union
Attempts by the opposition's arbitration lawyers failed to remove the Baltimore County Police Department lieutenants from a union in Maryland earlier this week. An independent arbitrator struck down the motion, keeping the current contract in place. Ira Jaffee fought to keep police officers from the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 4 protected. President of the union Cole Weston states that this ruling will help them to continue to keep those officers represented for another year.
Union Arbitration Attorneys: Attempt To Move Lieutenants Fails
Though officials from the county were not immediately available for comment, they did tell the Union's arbitration lawyers that the move was going to help with the county's budget woes. They felt that it would ultimately end up saving the county money, but the move was not well received because the Police Executives Corps isn't actually a union at all. As such, if the lieutenants had been moved to it, they would not have the protections of the union.
The director of the county Office of Human Resources defended the move, stating, "The scope of the lieutenants responsibilities has evolved to the point where the lieutenant is more accurately defined as a commander than a rank-and-file employee. These responsibilities include authority over overtime and mileage reimbursement; allocation of human resources; disciplinary actions; oversight over specialized units once commanded by captains and recently their expanded authority during times when the captain is not on duty."
Union Members Prepare for Arbitration
Last week an agreement was reached between the two sides' arbitration lawyers that would make things right and serve the best interests of those lieutenants in question. Jaffe said that the county was not negotiating in good faith and that in bringing this up to its lieutenants in the last officer seemed to be forcing the issue to an impasse. He also stated that the county did not prove that it would save any money for the county itself. Current laws do keep the lieutenants within the police union.