Mayor Tom Henry Vetoes Ordinance Regarding City Employees Being in the Union


Published 07/18 2014 09:51PM

Updated 07/20 2014 11:17PM

Mayor Tom Henry held a press conference Friday morning to announce his veto to an ordinance that City Council passed on July 8th. Mayor Henry said that it’s unfortunate that the council approved an ordinance that had been tabled for weeks.

"City Council has presented an ordinance that I had to veto," said Henry at the beginning of his press conference.

Mayor Tom Henry spoke Friday morning explaining his veto to a city ordinance that was passed by city council just nine days ago allowing public safety employees to have a choice of being in a union or not.

"On July 8th when they an ordinance as amended impacting the employment of the public safety officers they neglected to talk with those effected," said Henry.

Mayor Henry said to his knowledge not one council member spoke with the police department before approving this ordinance.

Councilman John Crawford argued that the public has been fighting for their unions ever since this has been introduced, and this ordinance simply gives everyone the opportunity to be a part of one or not.

Crawford said, "If you want to be in the union that’s fine but I don’t want the city to be the one to say to have you, and if you were not to fire you."

Mayor Henry said that the Fire Department negotiated their contracts which were approved by him, and when City Council brought up the Police Department into the Fire Department's negotiations July 8th, the City Council should have spoken with the Police Department before making a decision.

“They sat down and talked with me about it negotiated and I did end up signing it. During the meeting the Police Department was thrown into it and I think that was wrong,” stated Mayor Henry.

Sofia Rosales-Scatena, President of the Patrolman Benevolent Association, said the Fire and Police are 2 different entities with different jobs and worries that if this stays new members that come into the job won’t fully grasp the nature of the union.

Rosales-Scatena said, "They may choose to not pay the 40 dollars per month and then they would be without legal representation if they were involved in a death or shooting."

Geoff Paddock said at the city council meeting on July 22nd he's hoping to get enough votes to sustain Mayor Henry’s veto.

Paddock said, "I'm pleased the mayor did veto the legislation and I’m hoping I have 4 votes."

Councilman Crawford said everybody else in Indiana has a Right to Work law and the City Council was just trying to pass the Right to Work law for city employees here in Fort Wayne.

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