CHICAGO — The police union in Toledo yesterday lost a bid for a temporary restraining order against the city following the approval of a fiscal 2010 budget that amends union contracts to help close a $48 million deficit and avoid a takeover by Ohio.
The roughly $230 million budget comes after months of debate among new Mayor Mike Bell, the City Council, and city employees. To balance the budget, the city re-negotiated its main firefighters’ contract, amended — without union agreement — its police contract, reduced to 75% from 100% a tax credit for residents who work outside the city, and increased the garbage fee.
“Maybe it’s not the perfect situation, but it may be a little more palatable to the general public,” Bell told reporters shortly after the City Council voted 8 to 4 to approve the budget.
After failing to reach an agreement with Toledo’s police union over cuts, the city declared so-called “exigent circumstances” resulting from falling income-tax revenue. The move allows the city to amend some of its police and fire contracts without union agreement.
The changes to the police contract mean that employees will make the city’s 10% pension contribution for the next nine months, and would have to make a contribution to their health-care benefits based on a sliding scale.
Despite losing the bid for the temporary stay in the Lucas County Common Pleas Court, the police union is still pursuing a permanent injunction against the contract changes. A hearing on the issue is scheduled for April 19.