SIOUX CITY | The Woodbury County Board on Tuesday settled the last of five union contracts for the next fiscal year, again approving raises of about 2 percent.
The board over the past two months has approved three-year contracts with its unionized employee groups for wages and benefits beginning July 1. Current contracts expire June 30.
Tuesday's action, on the Communications Workers of America Local 7177 contract, wrapped up the process. The local represents 57 county Sheriff's Office jailers and process servers.
The agreement provides raises ranging from 1.75 percent to 3 percent, depending upon tenure, for the first year, 1.75 percent to 2.5 percent for the second year and 2 percent for all employees in the final year.
The contract also grants leaves of absence for jury duty and specifies how job transfers will be handled.
The union's initial request, submitted Jan. 28, sought raises of 3 percent annually, an added holiday and bonus pay for being able to speak a foreign language.
The county responded with a proposed wage freeze and a larger employee contribution to health insurance premiums, from 8.31 percent to 8.96 percent of the package cost.
The county earlier approved multi-year contracts with four union groups that set 2 percent raises in each of three years through June 2016. Union members voted to accept the agreements.
"It was a good bargaining session this year," Human Resources Department Director J.D. Pellersels said.
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 61 Local 3462 represented three groups, covering 63 courthouse and 20 Juvenile Detention Center employees and 15 assistant county attorneys.
Additionally, roughly 40 workers in the Woodbury County Secondary Roads Department will receive 2 percent raises in each of the next three years. Those employees are represented by the Communication Workers of America Local 7103.
The board members will vote March 12, when they finalize the budget, on whether to give themselves and other elected county officials a 2 percent wage increase as recommended last month by the county Compensation Board.