The Memphis Police Association addressed critical issues such as members’ pension and benefits, layoffs, holiday pay and more at a press conference held April 11. Vice President Michael Williams, along with Secretary Treasurer Jeff Herbison, Sargeant at Arms Shannon Bowen and several of the members of the Executive Board were present. Check out the links below for MPA news and events.
Check out the April 2011 Newsletter.
We need to know what you think. The MPA survey is ready for you.
City Council Member Update (April 19, 2011)
Letter to the Mayor (April 18, 2011)
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April 18, 2011 Letter to the Mayor
Today, Apr 18th, 2011 at 9:30am, Michael Williams, Jeff Herbison, and Deborah Godwin attended a meeting at city hall with Mayor Wharton. Below you will find an account of that meeting and the position that our attorney recommend we take. He will be presenting his budget to city council on tomorrow, the 19th of April. This letter was compiled by our attorney Deborah Godwin.
Mayor Wharton met with all the City public sector Union representatives this morning to advise them that he would be presenting his budget to the City Council tomorrow. He explained that because of the payments that have to be made to the school system that he had to find at least 20 million dollars this year. He indicated that he could not dip into reserves because it would adversely affect the City’s bond ratings. In his budget he has included layoffs or employee furloughs of 12 days or holidays over the year. For police and fire he is proposing eliminating the holiday check.
The Mayor candidly admitted that this was a 4.6% pay cut. It was pointed out to him that we had just concluded negotiations and the City had agreed to no raise, but an extension of all other terms of the MOA. He indicated that he did not have all these numbers during the negotiations and a lot depended on the outcome of settlement discussions over the school funding litigation. That was the administrations’ excuse for not raising these issues in negotiations.
The Mayor did say that he was still open to alternatives and did not want to take away from the employees. There was discussion about reinstating the $.18 tax cut that was given when the City decided not to fund the City schools.
Please be assured that it is the position of the MPA that the City cannot take away our holiday pay. To do so would violate the MOA. We believe there are alternatives, including layoffs if necessary, to this cut. We will work to find those alternatives and present them to the administration and City Council in budget hearings. If the City goes ahead and eliminates our holiday pay we will file a grievance – which we will take to arbitration and which we believe we will win. We think the administration knows this and may be engaging in political posturing. We will do what ever we can do to protect your pay and benefits.
Michael R. Williams
Memphis Police Association
April 12, 2011: MPA Myths & Facts
Read these myths and facts to stay updated about topics that are important to the MPA.
MYTH: Most private businesses with pensions have gone out of business or bankrupt.
FACTS: Most defined benefit pension plans that suffered losses in 2008-2009 have gained back any losses they experienced. Note that defined contribution plans/401k faced similar losses during 2008 – 2009.
The median household headed by a person aged 60-62 with a 401k account has less than one-quarter of what is needed in that account to maintain its standard of living in retirement. (Data compiled by the Federal Reserve and analyzed by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College for the Wall Street Journal.)
To read more, click MPA Myths & Facts.
April 12, 2011: MPA Board Suspends Sewell. Read the article from Memphis Daily News.
April 11, 2011: Press Conference
The MPA announced the completed negotiations with the City of Memphis on March 25, 2011. Click here to read the complete speech.
April 11, 2011: Police Union Explains Reason Behind President’s Suspension. To read more, visit abc24.