Dear Council Member :
As you know, on January 19, 2011, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg delivered his annual State of the City speech which outlined a number of policies and proposals—many of which directly impact New York City’s municipal unions.
Among many of the proposals he outlined, the Mayor proposed eliminating the Variable Supplement Fund payouts for every new employee hired in this agency and for those already on the job who have not yet reached 20 years of service. He also has proposed eliminating the process by which pension benefits are obtained by taking this process out of the hands of our state and city legislators and instead placing it exclusively in the hands of the New York City Office of Collective Bargaining. This, as you well know, would destroy a system that has been in existence for decades.
The mayor has also proposed that new contract negotiations should begin with a zero% wage increase and if we, the unions, seek to obtain any wage increases, we must first sacrifice our current benefits in order to fund any wage increase.
As the leader of the second-largest law-enforcement union in New York City, whose members oversee the largest municipal jail system in the nation, I want to share with you my position, which I have expressed to our membership, which is that COBA views the Mayor’s State of the City address as a direct declaration of war on municipal workers and their families.
Now that it is clear where the Mayor stands and where the COBA stands, it is imperative that we immediately ascertain where you, as a Council Member, stand on these pivotal issues that affect our members both now and in the future. The Mayor cannot move any of his proposals forward which require city and state legislative initiatives, without your support.
At your earliest convenience, please contact our Legislative Chairman Thomas Farrell at 212-274-8000, to schedule a meeting to discuss your specific positions on the aforementioned issues among many other areas that have a critical impact on New York City’s Boldest.
We look forward to hearing from you very soon.