De Blasio nears settlement of more expired union contracts

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio at New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio at City Hall on Thursday, May 8, 2014. Photo Credit: Getty Images

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The de Blasio administration appears to be close to settling more expired labor contracts with the city's unionized workforce, officials told the City Council Friday.

Contracts with the Council of Supervisors and Administrators, which represents about 6,000 principals and other school officials, and the New York State Nurses Assocation, which represents about 8,000 registered nurses at city public hospitals, are near settlement, said Bob Linn, Mayor Bill de Blasio's chief labor negotiator. Mayoral aides also echoed de Blasio's previous assertion that he hopes to have many more agreements tied up by year's end.

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When de Blasio took over the mayor's office this year from Michael Bloomberg, all 152 contracts with unions representing 297,000 city workers were expired.

In April, de Blasio announced the settlement of the biggest contract, with the United Federation of Teachers, with 100,000 members. That contract, which includes back pay, raises, and a requirement for savings on health care, will set the template for the rest under the negotiating technique known as pattern bargaining.

Friday's daylong budget session marked the end of weeks of City Council oversight hearings into the mayor's proposed $73.9 billion budget for fiscal year 2015, which begins on July 1. De Blasio is opposing moves by some council members to add spending for 1,000 more NYPD cops, free lunch for all schoolchildren, even those from wealthy families, and other programs.

Nonetheless, the hearings have remained overwhelmingly cordial, in sharp contrast with those in the Bloomberg years when council members jousted frequently over cuts the administration sought.

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