The Hutchinson City Council, which has already angered two city employee unions by imposing an unpopular change in sick leave policy, will take on a third union, the Fraternal Order of Police, over the same issue on Tuesday.
Negotiations for a 2014 contract stalled, and an impasse over the sick leave issue was declared last October. A federal mediator met once, unsuccessfully, with the city and the FOP. The next step should have been submitting the dispute to an impartial fact finder for a recommendation, but that hasn’t happened.
The FOP’s attorney has requested a number of records in preparation for fact finding. According to a memo prepared for the council meeting, the city has “made every reasonable effort” to provide relevant records. However, the memo by City Manager John Deardoff says the city rejected the request for some records because they were protected by privacy law or were irrelevant to the dispute.
Sgt. Tyson Meyers, a FOP representative, disputed that. He said every officer provided a waiver of privacy so that the city could provide an accounting of how much sick leave officers have used under the Family Medical Leave Act, which allows them to take off for events such as the birth of a child or when another family member falls ill.
(Read more: The Hutchinson News)Details