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AFSCME and Lackawanna County meets before arbitrator

05.26.14

APRIL 2014, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton Edition of The Union News

AFSCME and Lackawanna County meets before arbitrator

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION, March 31st- The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Union and officials representing Lackawanna County have begun conducting hearings before an arbitrator in the attempt to gain a new labor agreement between the two parties.

AFSCME and Lackawanna County failed to reach an successor contract agreement and the arbitrator will determine the pact between the parties. A arbitration meeting between the parties and the arbitrator was held on March 12th.

AFSCME Local 2736 represents the Correction Officers (CO’s) of the Lackawanna County prison, and they have been without a Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) since December 31st, 2012 when the previous pact expired. However, the two parties have been working under the terms and conditions of the expired contract.

AFSCME’s other bargaining unit that represents workers of Lackawanna County voted in the spring of 2013 to extend their agreement for one year which also was slated to expire on December 31st 2012. That unit also is currently working under the terms and conditions of the previous CBA. That agreement covers workers employed within the Children and Youth Department of Lackawanna County.

Eric Schubert, Business Representative of AFSCME District Council 87, which Local 2736 is affiliated, told the newspaper Lackawanna County’s final contract offer included a huge increase in monthly health insurance costs and other concessionary contract demands.

The CO’s under law are forbidden to strike when their union fails to reach a successor contract agreement and the two parties must meet before an arbitrator. The next meeting is scheduled for May.