Showing a stunning and callous disregard for the hard work and sacrifices you have made in serving Montgomery County, the County Council today voted to zero out all provisions of your next year’s revised collective bargaining agreement. They even voted against increases in things such as your food allowance and other incidental expenses. In addition, they voted against both the police and the firefighters’ revised agreements.
As such, the County Executive’s entire workforce can expect zero income growth in FY 2021.
Only Councilmembers Tom Hucker and Will Jawando stood up for you and your families with compelling arguments on why the Council should continue to work with the unions and the County Executive’s office to come to an agreement that would satisfy all parties. We thank them for their support.
Meanwhile, Councilmembers Craig Rice, Hans Riemer and Andrew Friedson displayed complete contempt and hostility by vigorously speaking against any increase for you and your famlies in any form. One of our members characterized it correctly: “This is a slap in the face.”
They call you heroes for continuing to work and provide services for the County in midst of an unprecedented pandemic, while they and their entire staff enjoy the safety of their homes. They reward you by stripping you of any expected pay or benefits increases next year!
Watch the hearing! Some of what you hear will infuriate you! https://youtu.be/HJvKK4evKH8
The Council’s vote has set the stage for a continued contentious relationship between the Council and the County workforce.
All three unions (MCGEO, the police and the firefighters) exploring all feasible actions against the County Council and their staff who continue to mischaracterize and exaggerate the costs of our negotiated agreements. We will need to take action in the immediate future, and what form that will take is undecided, but their actions have also set the stage for a political showdown leading into the 2022 election cycle.
You must not sit idly by while this Council works to chip away and undermine collective bargaining and you and your families’ financial health. We must join with our brothers and sisters in the IAFF (firefighters) and FOP (police) and build the political power necessary to assure that the majority of the next county council respect the collective bargaining process and votes to support the work you do and the quality services you provide.
Your union, along with the IAFF and FOP, will be developing a comprehensive strategy to move forward. Be prepared to take action.
Stay healthy and look out for each other. We will get through this together.