TUPPER LAKE - The village board approved a tentative agreement with its three unions at a Wednesday morning meeting.
The agreement includes a $5 increase for each level of health insurance contributions and raises for each department. Unit I, which includes the village office, Department of Public Works and the Water and Wastewater Department, and Unit III, the village's electric workers, are set to get 1.5 percent wage increases every fiscal year of the contract.
Unit II, which represents the village's police force, will get a 1 percent raise for 2012-13 and a 1.25 percent raise in each of the following fiscal years.
The agreement includes the creation of a health insurance committee, which will include a bargaining unit member from each of the three units and three village representatives. The committee will explore ways to achieve savings on health insurance costs.
"They will have a more hands-on say in choosing," explained village Clerk Mary Casagrain at the Wednesday morning special meeting.
If the committee's work results in a savings on health insurance costs, the parties will share the savings with 70 percent going to the village and 30 percent going to the units. The savings to the units will be paid in a one-time payment to eligible employees.
"They were very excited about it," village Mayor Paul Maroun said Wednesday morning. "We're glad to do it."
The contract runs from June 1, 2012, to May 31, 2015.
Maroun said the percentages actually end up costing the village more than just the salary increase because there are also increases in benefits that are tied to those increases.
Unit I used to be on a different cycle than the other two, but this March the village negotiated with that group a one-year contract so all the union units could be negotiated at once, simplifying things.
All the bargaining units agreed verbally to the new contract, Maroun said.