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Source: Kokomo Tribune

Firefighters to receive first pay raise in 7 years

By Carson Gerber

Kokomo firefighters are set to get a more than 6 percent pay raise over the next three years after the International Association of Firefighters Local 396 and the city settled on a new contract.

IAFF Local 396 President Rick Daily said the pay increase is the first raise in seven years. Firefighters will receive a 2 percent increase during the first and second years, and another 2.5 percent raise the third year, he said.

Kathy Horton, director of human resources and a member of the city’s bargaining team, said the city was able to pay for the wage increase by shifting some of the current benefits.

Daily said the contract also calls for a small increase on longevity pay, as well some changes to their insurance.

He said the more than 100 voting union members overwhelmingly ratified the new contract during a meeting Thursday.

The three-year contract runs from Jan. 1, 2015, to Dec. 31, 2017.

“Contract negotiations are never easy,” Daily said. “Our job is to get what we can and their job is to hold back. But we’re happy enough with how the contract turned out … We’re satisfied, and we appreciate what the city did. Sometimes it gets a little heated, but we always shake hands at the end of it.”

Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight also said the contract negotiation went well.

“We appreciate the women and men of the Firefighters Local working with us to reach a mutually fair and equitable agreement, and look forward to three more years of cooperative effort and focus on serving the taxpayers” Goodnight said in a press release.

Carson Gerber can be reached at 765-854-6739, carson.gerber@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter @carsongerber1.

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