Quincy aldermen reject proposed firefighter contract - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Quincy aldermen reject proposed firefighter contract

QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) - It's back to the drawing board for Quincy city aldermen and the firefighters union.

In an eight to six vote Monday night, the city council rejected the proposed one year contract for firefighters.

Mayor Kyle Moore believes the aldermen wanted a longer contract, like a three year deal. However, he says the strategy that had been worked out with the union was for the shorter contract to prevent fire services from being affected by the current budget.
Fire Chief Joe Henning says if a deal isn't reached by this summer, the department will turn to "brownouts." This means each fire house would briefly close one at a time and on a rotating basis.

"There will be some brownouts in the city, and when that happens it will just be determined on the budget. We wanted to give the aldermen the opportunity to not close the fire stations, not to do brownouts, and that was the strategy behind this budget, coupled with the one year deal with the firefighters union," Moore said.

Henning says brownouts would allow the fire department to save money on overtime costs. Henning says with five fire houses in Quincy, there must be 16 firefighters on duty at all times. If brownouts are implemented, they would be able to staff four fire houses without extra overtimes costs when firefighters take vacations or call in sick.

But, brownouts may never happen. Moore believes contract negotiations could start again this week. The brownout idea is dependent on what happens in those negotiations.

Also at Monday's city council meeting, aldermen approved leasing the office facilities at Quincy Regional Airport to LB Broadcasting.

They also approved various street closures for this weekend's Dogwood Festival.

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