Leaders of the city's municipal labor unions gave their blessing Friday to a proposed teachers contract imposing $1.3 billion in health care savings, but several unions of cops and firefighters signaled unease with the deal.
By a vote of 20 to 2, the steering panel of the Municipal Labor Committee approved the agreement, between Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration and the United Federation of Teachers.
The committee is an umbrella group representing the 150-plus bargaining units that make up the city's 300,000-strong mostly unionized workforce. The group must green-light changes to health care because what happens with one union influences negotiations with the others. All of the committee's units are set to vote on Monday.
The two "no" votes were Stephen Cassidy of the FDNY's Uniformed Firefighters Association and Michael J. Palladino of the NYPD's Detectives Endowment Association.
"Congratulations to Michael Mulgrew and the teachers union," Palladino said, referring to the teacher union head. "However, I think police and fire have a very difficult, dangerous and at times a deadly job, and that package doesn't meet our needs."
Harry Nespoli, the head of the Municipal Labor Committee and also a sanitation union official, said that he respects the dissenters but: "I think this is a fair contract for the City of New York."
It looks like only the cops and the firemen are going to hold out for a better deal than what the UFT and the city announced on Thursday - the rest of the unions look to be going along.
That means the only the UFT deal doesn't happen now is if the UFT membership votes it down.