RDOS board ratifies union labour contract

Pay increases will only apply for some job classifications in the first year after pay classifications are redefined

The regional district board ratified a new collective agreement between the RDOS and the BC Government and Service Employees Union at  the regional district regular board meeting on July 5.

Chief Administrative Officer Bill Newell told the board that no memorandum of settlement was received after contract talks hit an  impasse and went to mediation earlier this year, but employees had voted in favour of the last offer brought forward.

“There is no monetary increase for 2012,” Newell said, noting that employee classifications had inconsistent pay increases attached to them. As a result of a redefinition of the classification for pay rates, the initial 2.98 per cent hike will result in an increase for some classifications, but not for others.

Pay increases of one per cent for each of the next two years (for each classification) will occur, in addition to increased sick leave (employees allowed a bank of 10 days instead of nine, at an accrual rate of a half day per month as opposed to one third of a day per month.)

Employees will also receive increase dental and vision care, in addition to a boot allowance in a three year agreement.The total offer represents 5.68 per cent over three years.

RDOS Chair and Penticton Mayor Dan Ashton voiced his lack of support for the contract, noting that city employees recently settled for little more than a signing bonus.

Penticton Directors Vassilaki, Ashton and Jakubeit opposed the contract, as did Keremeos Mayor Manfred Bauer.