Contracts in place for two Prospect unions


By Elio Gugliotti, Editor

PROSPECT — The town and the unions that represent supervisors and municipal employees have reached agreements on two-year contracts.

The contracts with United Public Service Employees Union (UPSEU) Unit 116 Prospect Supervisors and United Public Service Employees Union (UPSEU) Unit 115 Prospect Municipal Employees cover from July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2022.

The Town Council approved the deals July 21.

Much of the language and terms in the two contracts are the same. Under the agreements, employees received 2.25% raises this year and will get a 2.75% raise in the 2021-22 fiscal year. Employees received a 2.75% raise in the 2019-20 fiscal year.

Mayor Robert Chatfield said the raises for this fiscal year were factored into the budget when it was adopted in late spring. He said the 2.25% figure is based on the average from results of contract arbitrations in six other towns.

The supervisors’ contract gives the assistant library director $1,000 raises each year in lieu of — not in addition to — the wage increases.

Full-time employees are eligible for health insurance provided by the town through the Connecticut State Partnership Plan 2.0. Employees are paying 15.5% of the premium cost share this fiscal year — up from 15% last fiscal year — and will pay 16% in 2021-22.

Chatfield said the town has been incrementally increasing the percentage employees pay for health care to lessen the burden on taxpayers.

Employees who decline health insurance can receive a $115 payment per month, according to the contracts.

Full-time employees are eligible to participate in a defined contribution retirement plan. The town will contribute 7% of an employee’s wages to the plan each year, according to the contracts. The town previously contributed 8%. If the town doesn’t have an audited budget surplus, the town’s contribution can be less than 7% the following fiscal year but has to be more than 5%, the contracts state. This reduction would have to be negotiated.

Chatfield said officials settled on two years for the length of the contracts to hopefully get through the potential economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and then review the agreements.

The supervisors union represents about eight managerial positions in town.

Recreation Director Christopher Moffo, who is president of the union, said the negotiations went well.

“I think that the mayor and everyone worked well together, and we were happy with the outcome,” he said.

The municipal employees union represents about 16 town employees that work in Town Hall, the police department, senior center, community center and library.

“We worked together with the town to come up with the best contract that meets the needs for all of our union members,” said Lisa Munko, office manager at the Prospect Police Department and president of the municipal employees union.