LMPD :: Louisville Metro Police Department

FOP Members Vote No To City's Proposals


The call went out last Friday that LODGE 614 would hold a special meeting to discuss the proposals offered by Metro Government to Police Officers who wished to retain their take-home cars.

I knew that this was a pivotal issue and that there would be a large showing at the Lodge. Over 800 of my brothers and sisters arrived to voice their concerns over this issue. The parking lot was filled to capacity and neighboring streets and business lots were lined with police cars to accommodate the numbers. We sincerely apologize to our neighbors for the overwhelming numbers of parked police vehicles along their streets and lots, but ironically it may never happen again.

President McGuire explained how the FOP did meet with city officials last week and offered numerous other cost saving solutions to avoid this crisis, but that the city rejected them all. The city did not want to negotiate. The city demanded that officers choose 1 of their 4 plans. 3 of those plans directly affected our pension benefits.

As President John McGuire explained the conditions of the city's offer, all realized that the mayor's "budget shortfall" didn't happen overnight. He reminded us that the city's offer is yet another attempt to circumvent our contract by the Abramson administration. After being beaten in court in an attempt to take away our guaranteed health benefits, Abramson views the take-home car program as the achilles heel to force our submission. He is wrong. The members listened, asked questions and resoundingly rejected all of the proposals.

What Metro Government has failed to concede is that we have already given up benefits and pay raises over the past several years in order to help out. When the city stated they could no longer afford to pay for our health benefits, we agreed to pay more. When gas skyrocketed over the past summer we agreed to pay for use of our police cars. When the city claimed they had no money to give us raises, we agreed to a 3 year contract with only a 2% raise in the last year and resigned ourselves to the knowledge that we are among the lowest paid police departments of cities are size.

All of these concessions made at the request of the city and now they tell the public that we are not doing our share? Mr Mayor, Chief White, we are far from making your six figure salaries and cannot afford to give you anymore.

Mayor Abramson announced that he will furlough all "non-essential" employees 3 days (24 hours) over the next six months. He lives in his Ivory tower and has no idea what a day's pay means to a single mom barely making ends meet who works for Metro Government and now has to lose 8 hours pay on her Christmas check. Coincidentally, the "Light-Up-Louisville" theme was to be about the ?Grinch who Stole Christmas!?

Instead of examining the issue and announcing a 1 hour furlough each pay period for the next 24 pay periods that would have been much easier for that single mom he tells her that he is broke and she and all her co-workers have to pay to fix it. Sorry I spent too much again Metro Employees but I just can't seem to balance this checkbook of mine and all these bills are due and so now you have to help me pay them.

Mayor Abramson says he will take a 10% pay cut for the next six months. When you have a six figure income it is a lot easier to get by with a little less money than for those of us that have kids, mortgages, tuition etc. making considerably less.

I figured out that in order for me to participate in plan "A" that it would have cost me roughly between 10% and 11% of my take home salary. Let's see, which bills should I not pay this month? I am sure that if I call my mortgage company and tell them times are tight that they should give back some of their money that they will gladly do so. Should I work a couple more of off duty jobs, not get any sleep and never see my family? It won't really be a take home car then because I never would be home.

I am not alone in this. In fact, I know that our Lodge stands united in saying that we have negotiated in good faith. We have offered solutions other than charging employees money for the budget crisis that they didn't create. We have taken cuts in pay and benefits every year since merger because we were asked to, yet we still see Metro Government wasting millions on frivolous spending and poorly made decisions time and time again. We have seen time and time again that Mayor Abramson believes that public safety comes after private parties. How much is too much? I think we just found the answer.