Town Council’s Vote on the Fire Contract May Be Felt at Election Time

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The Town Council’s decision to reject the fire union’s contract may be felt come November’s Town Election.

The vote on Dec. 9 rejected the arbitration award decided by a neutral panel. It also raised the ire of many in the Fire Department along with friends, family and others who thought that the Watertown Firefighters deserved a new contract and after 5 1/2 years.

Tuesday’s meeting again drew scores of firefighters and other unions, who rallied before the meeting asking the Town Council to reconsider its vote.

Former Fire Union President Tom Thibaut said he and other members of the union have talked to many in Watertown who were upset by the vote.

“You should be aware that people are frustrated as hell,” Thibaut said. “People come to me and say it is time for a change on the Council. I couldn’t agree more. We need someone with a backbone. Three people have said the me they are going to run.”

Nominations papers will be available from the Town Clerk’s office starting on May 11, according to the 2015 Town Election Calendar. Papers must be submitted by July 16. The Preliminary Town Election will be held on Sept. 15, if enough candidates run. The general Town Election will be held on Nov. 3.

One thought on “Town Council’s Vote on the Fire Contract May Be Felt at Election Time

  1. I am a Watertown firefighter and I’ve heard from WATERTOWN taxpayers that have reached out to the Councilors by phone and they have been hung up on or told this is just a part time job and they don’t have time for this. I don’t expect every taxpayer in watertown to just side with us without knowing the facts, but we followed the law, we can’t go on strike, we bargained, met with a mediator and came to an agreement with the Town to let an Arbitrator decide the outcome. We didn’t win in Arbitration and neither did the Town. It’s what a neutral party , who’s educated and a lawyer who hears the facts and makes a ruling. Each side has a representative and the town’s rep, who is a retired town manager, was 100 percent on board with the ruling. All the Councilors, except Tony Polumbo, stated it was unfair to the other Unions. All the other Town Unions have stood with us, therefore the councils reason has no weight. We hired a Financial expert to see what the town’s finances were and even we were shocked. This Town has money, and is expanding at an alarming rate, but at the same time, raising taxes and cutting services. All I ask is, think about it, what’s more important to you, the taxpayers. The employees of the Town you live in or , the trees, bikepaths and plastic bags. Stand behind the Town employees, because they are what makes you want to live in Watertown.

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