Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Elyria – After a marathon negotiating session on Tuesday, the City of Elyria and the Elyria Firefighters Union has reached a tentative agreement that will prevent any Firefighter from being laid off in 2009.

Union President Dean Marks said this afternoon that the deal still must be voted on by the Union and City Council, but he is hopeful that the deal will be approved.
“The Union has some concessions in those meetings to help with the finances and the City has done their part by saying that in fact they will not have any layoffs in 2009 in the Elyria Fire Department. That is critical to us because for us it’s always been about safety and we feel that if they keep these guys on the job it gives us the ability to one, protect ourselves and to keep four stations open in the City which of course means more safety for the citizens of Elyria.”

Marks said that the concessions are coming from Firefighters salaries. “It’s all parts of our contract, so essentially we’re taking a cut in our salary to alleviate some of the financing for the City. There is some pay that we are due later this year and we went ahead and said that we will no longer take those pays to save the city some money so that we can keep these guys on the job.”

All Firefighters were called to an informational meeting at the Cedar Street Station this afternoon at 2pm, Marks stepped away to meet with the Media to make the announcement. Marks said that although the members had a lot of questions about the deal, the guys know that in the end the deal will keep all the Firefighters on the job. “They know that these are guys that will be behind us in the fire to help us out. Like I said, this is our second family and we don’t want to see anyone cut so we are doing what we can to help out to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

Marks said that with the concessions they have agreed to it will save the City $250,000.00 from now until the end of the year.

The next step now for the Fire Department is for the Union to vote, Marks said that will be sometime next week – probably Thursday. Elyria City Council will also have to sign off on the deal to make it final.

Marks said that the marathon sessions contained a lot of back and forth with a lot of number crunching. “I think it was well received by both sides, I think we got together – sat down at the table in good faith and came up with an agreement.”

When asked about the difference between what the City had said would have to be cut from the Fire Departments budget, $600,000.00, and the $250,000.00 that they are agreeing to in concessions, Marks said that the City is going to
“make some changes in their budget to come up with the monies that they would need in fact to keep us on the job. One of the ways will be to move our mechanic from our budget and put him back on the Central Maintenance Garage’s budget so that will be a savings of about $75,000.00 right there.”

Marks said that Union officials were selling the agreement to the members and said that he is hopeful that they will come up with something that will work for all sides.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am very happy to hear that the EFD union leadership and the city administration have reached a tentative agreement. Hopefully, city council and the union membership will also agree. Congratulations to all! And a special thank you to Dean Marks!

Kim Ach (curiousmom)

11:26 PM  

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