Austin Police Department Meet And Confer Agreement

 12 September 2021      

A group of representative interest organizations in Austin met Tuesday to call on leaders to end negotiations with the Austin Police Officers` Union. “We`ve had a lot of critical incidents, from Sophia King to David Joseph to Morgan Rankins and very little responsibility,” Moore said. “If we created this thing (Meet-and-Confer) and we don`t get it, why do we pay?” LINK: Austin presents changes in the role of police monitor in union negotiations Chas Moore, of the Austin Justice Coalition, said the purpose of the meeting and conference was to account for and discipline public servants who participate in misconduct. The organizations shared with the media on Tuesday a number of recommendations they made during the latest negotiations, including reform of the Department`s 180-day rule, which limits the time available to the police commissioner to discipline staff; automatic elimination of degraded suspensions; the granting of powers of assignment to the current supervisory bodies; allow misconduct to be duly taken into account in promotions; allow citizens to file complaints online or by telephone; allow the police monitor to open an investigation without a complaint from citizens; End the permanent sealing of police misconduct files; and share recordings without deleting the content. An alliance of Council members, with overlapping fiscal responsibility and interests, has made this a reality when few people have seen it as possible. Jimmy Flannigan has always expressed concern that the treaty does not offer sufficient financial flexibility to hire officials who want his constituents. Greg Casar, one of the main votes in favor of increased police oversight, said he hoped ODA and the council could work together to find ways to increase the diversity of recruitment and promotions outside the contract. In January, council will have to expect specific wage provisions such as mental health and job difference, which are not yet engraved in the city bylaw, but are still allowed by state law. If the Council wants officials to maintain these incentives, it must act.

“The Council has sent a very strong message that the Community deserves transparency and accountability,” said Mr Casar. “And that we need to make sure that we both have competitive salaries in the police, but also enough flexibility in our budget to meet urgent community needs, which are certainly related.” In a letter to the city manager, APA attorney Ron DeLord wrote that union membership was “disappointed that the five-year contract, which is beneficial to both parties, has not been ratified” and that it would refrain from proposing three additional extensions to the current agreement. Despite this, Mr DeLord said that membership was interested in a new intervention next year and invited the Council to extend the step-by-step and special remuneration for another year, or until a new agreement could be reached. The union leadership hinted at this possibility before Tuesday: last week`s council vote to reject the deal in its current form was contrary to history and a strong and united effort by Manley and APA members, who took note of the recruitment, promotion and accountability measures that the city would lose without the treaty. Meanwhile, Manley told the Public Safety Commission in early December that it could cost $16 million if all currently eligible civil servants did so to maximize expiring benefits, such as sickness benefits. On Tuesday, APA President Ken Casaday said 20 officials, mostly airport management, had retired in recent days. This is in addition to the usual census (about fifty) who have already retired this year. Casaday was planning further retirements, with the countdown continuing until December 29. SEE ALSO: Council approved $17 million contracts for police cameras in Austin Manley said Tuesday it will continue to cooperate with the City of Legal to determine how the impasse affects a number of internal processes, including whether it should arbitrate whether officials are legally represented in internal interviews.

. . .