Newly hired members of the Larchmont Policeman Benevolent Association (PBA) will now contribute more to their healthcare and retirement plans than before, potentially easing the burden on Larchmont residents’ property taxes.
The contract between the Village of Larchmont and the PBA—which was renewed for a three-year term effective June 1, 2011—will freeze wage increases at 1.5 percent annually for the next three years. According to Larchmont Mayor Josh Mandell, increases have hovered around 4 percent for the last decade.
“This is the lowest increase in 25 years,” said Mandell, referring to the newly negotiated rate.
This would mean that someone whose starting salary was $42,000 last year, would now make $42,630 with the new increase.
In past years, tax increases have reflected wage increases for public employees. This 2.5 percent reduction in the rate of wage growth, however, translates to an approximately 1.75 percent potential reduction in the tax levy.
“[This] will go a long way toward meeting the challenges we all face in these difficult economic times,” said Mandell.
Additionally, employees hired after Nov. 21 will now have to contribute 25 percent to their health care benefits after the removal of an annual cap on contributions and 50 percent of their health care insurance premiums when they retire, the statutory limit in New York State.
“These employees have done their part to encourage the long-term stability of the village and their work force,” said Mandell. The board unanimously approved the contract renewal.
Police are now attempting to fill two of the three vacancies in the department.
Editor's Note: A previous version of this article referred to a "2.5 percent reduction in wages." This statement has been clarified to read "a 2.5 percent reduction in the rate of wage growth."