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Suffolk correction officers union ratifies 8-year contract

Suffolk's correction officers union has ratified a new eight-year contract that will raise salaries 14.5 percent. The vote, announced Friday, was 448 to 295, reflecting an 83 percent member turnout.

Louis Viscusi, president of the Suffolk County Correction Officers Association, praised County Executive Steve Bellone and his negotiators for a pact that "finds the balance between the needs of our officers and the current fiscal strain the county is facing." He vowed support in getting the legislature to approve it.

Despite five years without a new contract, Viscusi said, officers "have continued to perform our dangerous and vital function ... with the highest degree of professionalism." Bellone aides filed a fiscal impact statement reducing the pact's cost estimate from $55 million to $52.87 million.

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