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Judge Grants Unions Preliminary Injunction Against Mangano Law

The law, if enacted, would have given County Executive Ed Mangano the authority to open up collective bargaining agreements.

A federal judge granted local labor unions a preliminary injunction on the Nassau County Executive Powers Expansion Law (Local Law No. 315-12) Monday.

The law, if enacted, would have given Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano the authority to open up collective bargaining agreements and extract $41 million or more in drastic labor cuts to pay for the county's backlog of property tax judgments.

Judge Arthur Spatt granted the plaintiffs -- the Correction Officers Benevolent Association (COBA), Civil Service Employees Association, Police Benevolent Association (PBA), Detectives Association Inc. and Superior Officers Association -- the preliminary injunction, barring the county executive from unilaterally modifying any terms or conditions of employment for any unions that are set forth in contracts, according to a release from the COBA.

No changes can be made pending the final determination at the conclusion of the case.

"When you enter into an agreement with somebody, you should keep your word on that agreement," Nassau PBA President Jim Carver told Patch Tuesday, "and that’s what this is about -- keeping your word, your promise on a deal."

Carver made a point of saying that the various union members are already under a wage freeze set forth by the Nassau Interim Finance Authority (NIFA).

"[This law] would have gone beyond just freezing our salaries, it would have gone into diminishing benefits," he said. "... This is a big win."

Also denied was the county’s argument that Spatt didn't have the jurisdiction to decide the federal issue since COBA has introduced a motion in state court contesting the manner in which this local law was adopted. The COBA is still proceeding in state court on this matter.

Lastly, the county asked the judge to have the plaintiff’s post a $41 million bond to put in escrow pending the final determination. Judge Spatt denied the county's motion on that request as well.

"This is a major victory for COBA and all of the other county labor unions," said John Jaronczyk, President of the Nassau County Sheriff’s Correction Officers Benevolent Association, in a release. "... We believe that Local Law 315-12 is unconstitutional and that this law was illegally approved by the legislature. We are very confident that we will prevail in these matters in the coming months."

Carver echoed Jaronczyk’s sentiments, saying that by looking at the judge’s language, he feels the unions will win in the long run.

David Rosenthal August 25, 2012 at 02:11 PM
Politics, smolitics, ergotics-- what's it all about? Winners, losers, employed, unemployed-- my Party, your Party.. People today are one-sided, not willing or in many instances incapable to join in a discussion to come to a meaningful conclusion without getting an attitude. Compromise is a dirty word. People are inherently spoiled, demanding this and that without regard to the general consequenses. We are so close to the forest we cannot see the trees! Let's get together--- right now we are on an inflatable raft, pushing each other overboard-- and we cannot step back and look at the whole picture for a fear of drowning or loosing our self importance.
joe thrapp August 27, 2012 at 08:57 PM
Mac, When things turn around yes, we have give backs to the unions. I believe when there are more revenues,the economy picks up, people go back to work, then there will be an increase to taxpayer wealth. They can support necessary county increases including union givebacks. I always try an look at the world from both views. Good Afternoon.
Mac August 27, 2012 at 11:36 PM
Joebush so just to be clear when the economy turns around you will advocate to renegotiate union contracts to give more back and restore to levels they were accustomed previously? I guess it would be the first. Very unlike gas when the price of oil goes up so does gas but when the price of oil drops gas never seems to go back to match originally. Things never really go back.
Love This City August 28, 2012 at 12:19 AM
Mac - JoeBUsh I think your conversation about "when the economy turns around" is really really premature. Besides the turnaround we also have $16 trillion debt to pay off and that debt doesn't include the $4 trillion plus in state and municipal debt around the country. So in like 20-30 years of belt tightening - I will also agree to pre-existing levels of union pay and uncontrollable debt and spending, so the next 2 generations can feel the pain like we all will for the next 20-30 years...
Greta October 27, 2012 at 05:21 AM
you have a lawn?

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