Council Approves Local 598 Labor Agreement

Updated 1 year ago by Tony E. Rutherford, News Editor

Huntington City Council unanimously approved  a three year contract with Local 598 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees that provides employee pay raises of 5% the first year, 4% the second year and 3% in year three.

Mayor Steve Williams said, "Our employees deserved the raises and we can afford them." 

The contract sets a $15 per hour minimum wage plus health and pension benefits. "The best way to say thank you is a living wa]age and safe environment. "

Williams praised the upgraded camera and sound system which debuted with the Tuesday meeting. 

"Council members are now in high definition," the mayor chided, aadding, "make sure you shave and apply makeup."

Previously, the televised meetings had a low light wide view of the full council and an ability to switch to a shot of the speaker's podium. The sound often was so low you could barely identify who was speaking.

The newly installed system has (at least) five camera angles,  which allow close ups of a speaking council member and  speaker. A master shot of council has greater color and clarity . You can hear the speakers without hollowness. 

Williams said the system has the capacity for  recording and playback. 

Councill heard first reading of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Homeland Security and ICE that reimburses officers for overtime earned during drug trafficking investigations. 

"If we expend overtime on it we can get reimbursed and we can also get training, equipment and technology through the grant,"  Police  Chief Hank Dial said.

Dial said ICE can reimburse each officer who participates up to a cap of $15,000.


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