East Bay News

Concord city employees protest furlough days

Friday, September 21, 2012

In Concord, nearly 400 city workers will have a three day weekend, but instead of relaxing, they're protesting.

Friday was the first furlough Friday of the new fiscal year. In the morning, employees staged a small protest demanding to work.

They showed up at the Concord's corporation yard. Photos of the protest were taken by our media partner the Contra Costa Times. Members of teamsters Local 856 agreed to 13 furlough days per year back in 2009, but now they say the city is doing so much better and it's time for the furloughs to end.

"The money's there, let's get rid of the furloughs and reestablish your services throughout the city," said Kai Horlacher, a Concord public work employee.

We spoke to a member of the Concord City Council who says, the city still has a dangerously low reserve.

"We don't have the money that we'd like to have so we evoke the furloughs, which again is a temporary fix, not intended to be for the long haul," said Dan Helix-Concord City Council.

The teamsters say the continuation of the furloughs is illegal because it has yet to be agreed upon at the bargaining table. Those talks are ongoing.

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