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Commissioners agree to contract with attorneys’ guild

Kitsap County Commissioners approved the collective bargaining agreement with the Kitsap County Prosecuting Attorney Guild on Monday, granting a 2 percent cost of living increase for guild members in both 2013 and 2014.

The vote on the matter was unanimous and Commission Chairman Josh Brown pulled the item from the consent agenda in order to speak about it.

Brown said it was important to him that he thank those with the guild who negotiated the contract.

“I want to thank you for your collaboration on this contract,” Brown said. “It’s important to us that we attract and retain quality employees.”

Brown mentioned that there are other “open” contracts with other county employees’ unions that are on-going and still have to be negotiated.

This contract calls for health benefits in 2013 with reopening the discussion on that in 2014 and 2015, and a reopening the wages discussion in 2015.

The net impact to the county is $57,387 this year and for 2012, but was budgeted for in both years, according to Susan Smith, with the county’s personnel and human services department.

The contract runs from Jan. 1, 2012, to Dec. 31, 2015. Guild members have been working without a contract since January of 2012.

While most of a heavy three-page agenda was handled under the consent agenda, other than the contract agreement, Brown took time during the meeting to thank Bert Furuta, director of personnel and human services, who is retiring at the end of June. He has been with the county for more than 35 years.

“He has helped to build human services programs in our community and we want to thank him for his many years of service to Kitsap County,” Brown said.

In the consent agenda the commission passed a resolution regarding the current meals per diem rate for county employees who travel overnight on county business.

According to Dave Schureman, financial services manager, the county’s current reimbursement rate is beyond the suggested IRS reimbursement.

Schureman’s summary to commissioners said “the resolution improves the efficiency of the county’s travel reimbursement process by removing the requirement for allocation of the per diem rate among breakfast, lunch and dinner, thereby limiting per diem testing to confirmation of the daily total only.”

The state auditor’s office supports the change in policy.

 

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