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Park Rapids police deal gives officers graduated raises; council OKs CIP

The Park Rapids City Council approved a three-year contract with the police union.

     The contract is effective Jan. 1, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2016. In the past, the city has negotiated a two-year contract but the union and city felt it would be beneficial to go to a three-year contract.

     Wages will increase by 2 percent in 2014, 2.5 percent in 2015 and 3 percent in 2016.

     Insurance coverage will stay the same for single coverage in 2014 at $625 per month. Dependent coverage will not exceed an additional $260 per month. This would be a $35 increase.

     In 2015, insurance will be left open to discussion next year because everyone is unsure of the effect of the Affordable Care Act. Insurance in 2016 will be the same as 2015.

     The uniform allowance will stay the same in 2014 at $425 and increase to $450 for 2015 and 2016.

     Each officer will receive two floating holidays (they currently receive one). The police currently have one less holiday than other departments. By having a floating holiday, they will be able to take it whenever it works for them provided it is approved by the police chief.

     The city is still negotiating a contract with the public works employees.

     In other business, the council:

  •       Approved a Capital Improvement Plan for 2014-18.

     The CIP outlines large needs and wants in the city over five years, including street and utility projects, park improvements, equipment purchases and more.

     Projects completed on the CIP are funded in part by the liquor store fund and in part by bonding.

     Several major projects are listed on the proposed CIP for 2014-18.

     The water treatment facility will be carried over from 2013. The project is under construction on the west end of the city this fall.

     Water and sewer utility projects in Riverside Avenue, Todd Township, Rice Park, Discovery Circle and a portion of northwest Park Rapids are on the CIP.

     Other projects include a library elevator upgrade, which is required to pass inspection, laptops for squad cars, a fire department ladder truck and Red Bridge Park improvements.

  •      Authorized Chris Fieldsend, facility maintenance superintendent, to get a study done on the Red Bridge to determine how much it will cost to get a base for it in the park.
Anna Erickson
Anna Erickson is editor of the Wadena Pioneer Journal.
(218) 631-2561