Galloway Officially Sends Township Employees Back to Work

A budget of $23.068, million was also introduced.

Even though they’ve been back to work for two weeks, it was made official Tuesday night: Galloway Township employees are back to work five days a week.

The council also presented a proposed budget of $23.068 million at the meeting, a budget helped along by the restoration of Mondays to the workweek.

The employees’ return to work was made official in a vote by the council following a closed session Tuesday night, even though an agreement had been reached just under two weeks ago that sent them back to work immediately.

A ruling in favor of Local 210 found that the township owed back pay to employees that had been furloughed on Mondays since last year. Both sides recognized, however, that paying back the lost funds would put the township in deeper debt than it had been, and massive layoffs would be needed, so an agreement was reached at that time, with the details released Tuesday night.

Agreements were reached with Locals 210, 676 and 68, with the agreement with 68 coming within the last 24 hours. Workers are guaranteed there won’t be any layoffs for two years, and there won’t be any furloughs for the rest of the year. The township is allowed 12 furlough days for each union, if necessary, in 2012.

All unions agreed to forgo and waive recovery of any payments for furlough days served to date, and Local 676 and 68 each agreed to dismiss current pending litigation, with prejudice.

The end result of the deals involving all three unions is the township will save $682,000. Residents will see services returned to them, including twig and branch pickup, grass cutting at town hall and community events that were unable to be held previously, according to Deputy Mayor Don Purdy.

“Our employees lost 20 percent of their income,” Purdy said. “To lose your income is tough. There are people that got laid off that still have to pay taxes.”

“We are very happy to be going back to work on Mondays,” Recreation Director Beth Stasuk said. “Thank you for coming to the table for us.”

Purdy, and every other member of council, commended the employees on their commitment to their jobs during the furloughs.

“They endured a lot, and they came back to the negotiating table,” Councilman Jim Gorman said. “We really appreciate that.”

“I asked the department heads to give me a list of positives in working a five-day workweek as opposed to a four-day week, and all their comments started with serving the public,” Acting Township Manager Steve Bonanni said. “I was floored by their concern for the public.”

The township also agreed not to seek any increase in medical contributions from any of the unions beyond the current rate of 1.5 percent of their salary. There will also be no pay increase for the rest of this year, and a 1 percent increase next year.

Increases in meal allowances were also discussed, with $8 going to 210 and 68, and $8 for breakfast and $10 for dinner for Local 676, which will also get one additional personal day for bargaining unit members and three days bereavement for aunts and uncles.

The deal helped pave the way for the township to introduce the proposed 2011-12 budget, a public hearing for which will be held April 26. This year’s budget won’t be reviewed by the state, which is allowed two out of every three years.

The announcement from the state that aid for municipalities would remain status quo was welcome news, and the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey’s $300,000 donation to the township was also beneficial to a township that was facing a $1.7 million deficit heading into the year.

The state aid translates into $2,581,284 that the township will receive.

steponme yupyup March 23, 2011 at 11:05 AM
How come no one is addressing that they already spent all the money they were in the hole for. People got promotions and a new position was created so the fire department didn't have to loose their secretary.That adds up to the tune of about $100,000 right there. That place is a crazy joke. You as a writer suck because you paint Galloway as the perfect place to work. If you were a real reporter you would interview the actual emlpoyees and not Steve and Beth(because they call the shot) I bet you would find not everyone is happy with the things this administration is and has been doing. Just a thought.
Steve Moliver March 23, 2011 at 02:30 PM
Just a thought, I'll give you that. The reality is that your thought, simply put ...is thoughtless. Your attempt to throw political mud and see if it sticks is certainly your right. If you were properly informed you would find that there is a positive attitude from rank and file on up to department heads. This deal was supported by the Democratic minority as well as the Republican majority on Council, so I'm not sure what your motive really is other than to just anonymously moan and groan on a blog and then go back to sticking your head in the sand. I would venture to guess that when the weatherman says its sunny you say its raining. Just a thought.
Muad Slinger March 23, 2011 at 08:50 PM
Well after I clicked on your name I see were you are loyal. I am not slinging mud as I am not politically connected. I am just a person who sits by and is pushed around by the department heads. The employees of Galloway fear for there jobs and that is why they agree to everything. I have no motive other then to hopefully see that one day the employees who actually do all the work and have given back so much over the last 4 years are given the respect they deserve. You on the other hand are obviously in thier pocket and are hoping to get on council one day. Good luck to you I'm sure with your thoughts you will bring Galloway down just like everyone else in charge has.


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