Select Board OKs Belmont Patrol Officers Contracts; All Town Employee Agreements Completed

Photo: Final contract has been signed off

The Belmont Select Board approved two Memorandum of agreement with the 50-plus member Belmont Police Patrolman’s Association on a wintery Monday night, Jan. 23, completing contracts with each of the unions representing Belmont public employees.

“All our contracts are apparently settled,” said Patrice Garvin, Belmont’s town administrator who led the negotiations for the town.

“It’s great to be finally done,” said Mark Paolillo, chair of the Select Board. “I would characterize all of our contracts as fair … to the employees and also to the town of Belmont.”

The agreements are very similar to the pair of agreements OK’d two weeks ago with the firefighters union, said Garvin. The two contracts are:

  • A two-year term from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2022 with a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) of 2 percent in each year. The memorandum of agreement also includes an increase in the first responders stipend by 4.5 percent effective July 1, 2021.
  • The second agreement runs from July, 1, 2022 to June 31, 2025 with the COLA compensation at 2 percent for each of the 3 years. There is an increase for first responders stipend starting July 1, 2022. “This payment will be equal to 6 percent of the weekly base pay as well as an educational incentive for a bachelor’s degree,” said Garvin. The stipend will incrementally increase in the subsequent years, to 7 percent on July 1, 2023 and 8 percent in July, 1, 2024. Patrol officers will receive an extra dollar in their detail rate from $3.50 to $4.50, Juneteenth is added as a paid holiday, officers will receive a $2,000 Covid-19 stipend just like their firefighting brethren, and employees will receive five weeks of vacation after serving 20 years; currently to take five weeks requires 25 years of service.

Belmont Officers, Town Agree to Contract … And Prepares For Another

Photo: Police Headquarters.

It took a while, but the town and the union representing the cops on the beat have OK’d a new agreement in which Belmont officers receive a wage increase with some concessions – including limited drug testing – on their part.

And in a few months, the two sides will be right back at the bargaining table for another three-year contract.

The Belmont Board of Selectmen voted Monday, Aug. 8 to approve a three-year deal – from July 2014 to June 2017 – between the 31 member Belmont Police Patrolmen’s Organization and the town. 

“We’re very happy with the agreement and [the union’s] negotiating team which settled on a very reasonable settlement,” said Belmont Human Resources Director Jessica Porter. 

The contract’s highlights include:

  • An annual two percent cost-of-living-adjustment which is consistent with other town/union contracts.
  • While not random testing, the union agreed to drug and alcohol testing “based upon reasonable suspicion.” 
  • Newly hired officers as of July 1, will see their health insurance contribution rate go up from 20 percent to 25 percent in exchange for a 25 cents an hour increase n hourly pay. 
  • The stipend for officers who have associates/bachelors/masters degrees in criminal justice is increased to $5,000/$9,500/$11,000 as long as the officers complete their degrees within three-and-a-half years for graduating from the Police Academy. 
  • The 12 patrolmen who have reached Master Patrolman status – based on ten years of experience, training, and performance appraisal – will see their differential from the base salary increase from 2 percent to 2.4 percent. 

Just after the agreement was signed, Porter said she’d begin the next set of contract negotiations for a three-year agreement soon as this new contract expires this coming June 30. Porter is hopeful the new “new” contract will take less time to negotiate and settle. 

“It should be a little smoother for a new contract as we have recently discussed everything that will be on the table,” said Porter.