The Granville Village Board approved new contracts with the village police force and the public works department following a 25-minute executive session on May 2.
“We finally got this thing ironed out and got it settled out to the point where we can vote on it and pass it,” Mayor Paul Labas said.
The agreement reduces the number of full-time officers from six to five, but the Granville police department has just one full-time officer, T.J. Zovistoski who serves as school resource officer and union president. His shift is listed as 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.
“It is difficult, because you try to create scheduling and what we’re giving officers… and you don’t know how many, if any, you’ll be able to have,” Labas said in a May 4 phone call.
The police department’s roster has eight part-time officers following the departures of four full-time officers, then-Sgt. Ryan Pedone in October and officers Keith Seebode, Jeff Daigle and Ronald Taylor III in November for other area agencies.
“The police chief (Ernest Bassett Jr.) will normally staff the 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. tour,” the contract said. “A full-time officer will be scheduled to staff the 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. tour on Saturdays.”
On the current state of the department, Labas said that the village, along with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office and State Police, is still looking for officers after the civil service test was taken on April 9. Labas added that he has noticed a downward trend in interest of individuals seeking law enforcement as a career.
“We’re waiting for the amount of people that passed the test and we’ll go from there,” Labas said. “The county is standing in line, and so is the state, waiting to sweep up whoever passed the test.”
The village and the United Public Service Employees Union, which represents the police force, approved a collective bargaining agreement on Jan. 3 that provided an increase to the pay scale of officers.
Full-time officers with no certification make $21.00 an hour, followed by certified full-time officers and part-time officers at $23.00 an hour. The scale jumps up one dollar at the start of a full-time officer’s third year, then to $24.75 and $25.50 at the start of the officer’s fourth and fifth years, respectively.
Officers in charge of investigations are listed at $26.25 an hour. At the start of the officer’s 10th year, the pay is $28.00 an hour. Lastly, sergeants make $30.00 an hour and Police Chief Ernest Bassett Jr. was bumped up to $34.00 an hour.
The three-year contract agreement spans from June 1, 2021 through May 31, 2024 and agrees to “reduce the number of full-time employees from six to five by withdrawing prior Memorandum of Agreement (MoA).”
The contract also discusses overtime, paid leave, drug and alcohol testing, appeals and disciplinary procedures and processes.
The board also ratified the Memorandum of Agreement between the village and CSEA, the union representing the Granville Village Department of Public Works (DPW).
“It worked out well. We went back-and-forth on a couple of things and we settled it out,” Labas said. “They’re happy and we’re happy.”
The active DPW contract was set to expire May 31. This will also be a three-year agreement beginning June 1 until May 31, 2025.
The MoA ensures a raise of $1.00 an hour to all DPW employees starting June 1 and an increase of $0.75 an hour to all employees beginning June 1, 2023 and again on June 1, 2024.
Additionally, DPW employees will work a half-day on Good Friday with pay and be allotted $500 that will be reimbursed for the purchase of work boots and clothes.
Also addressed in the MoA was language in reference to medical insurance, buyouts and eligibility.
Zoning hearing set
The Granville Village Board has scheduled a public hearing for a zoning variance on Slate Valley Drive for June 6 at 7 p.m.
Mayor Paul Labas recused himself and abstained from the vote, as he is part-owner of the parcel in question with Dwayne Daigle.