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Union negotiations with one of three contract groups will go to arbitration after board members rejected a fact finder’s report during Wednesday’s meeting of the Corrections Commission of Northwest Ohio.
A fact finder had recommended a 2 percent wage increase for Corrections Supervisors, the first of three contract groups employed at CCNO. Contract negotiations are still pending for corrections officers and case managers. Upon the board rejecting the fact finder’s recommendation, the matter will head to an arbitrator for review and consideration.
Board members had pushed for 0 percent wage increases for all CCNO staff, citing financial hardships being incurred at the county and municipal levels which fund the regional jail due to dwindling tax revenues and less state funding. Board members also pushed for a reduction in the CCNO 2011 operating budget totaling $15.6 million which was trimmed by $50,556 over the 2010 budget.
Jim Dennis, CCNO Executive Director, said “our budget is lower than in 2007. We are funded by six jurisdictions that are experiencing tough financial times. The state has announced further cuts to local government that I believe will have a trickle down effect on CCNO.”
“CCNO staff desperately want a raise. They work hard. CCNO has a national reputation that staff contribute too. However, times are hard for everyone both the private and public sector have had to do without.”
“CCNO staff are professionals and they will continue to protect the public, protect the employees and protect the offenders while running a cost effective jail.”
In other business, the board gave special recognition to Henry County Common Pleas Judge Keith Muehlfeld who will retire from the bench in mid May. It was noted that Judge Muehlfeld served 16 years on the CCNO board as a common pleas judge.
In his operational report, Mr. Dennis said Wednesday’s population stood at 528 or 83 percent. The population dropped to an average of 514 or 81 percent in February but climbed to an average of 548 or 86 percent in March.
Mr. Dennis said CCNO was recently recognized among the top 50 jails in the United States by Jail Exchange. CCNO received all five stars for the facility’s online presence which was described as captivating and provided complete information essential to saving time, money and frustration for all involved including staff, families and friends of those incarcerated and the taxpayers. “By providing clear, relevant and meaningful online content, they (CCNO) have gone far beyond what over 99 percent of other facilities in the United States have done.”
CCNO will be hosting a corrections officer academy with the Lucas County Jail beginning in late June, said Mr. Dennis. He said this is the first partnership academy with both jail facilities.
Members accepted a sole bid from Cardinal Bus Sales & Services for the purchase of a new 44-passenger bus with heightened security equipment to include cages. The base bid stood at $158,900 with a trade-in of $10,000 listing the net bid at $148,900. Board members had delayed the purchase of a new bus for three years due to budget cuts with the last new bus purchased in 2007 but not received until 2008. The new bus will replace a 2005 model.
Members also approved the purchase of 10 taser units at a cost of $8,259. The new units will replace outdated units.
Travels costs were approved for members of the CCNO Special Response Team to attend special riot training in West Virginia. Also approved was for Mr. Dennis to attend the American Correctional Association audit hearing and Correctional Accreditation Managers Association conferences. Mr. Dennis will represent CCNO when it receives its ACA national award following an intense three-day inspection held in March in which CCNO received 100 percent in complying with 363 mandatory and non-mandatory jail standards.
Members met in executive session for 24 minutes to discuss negotiations and an investigation. In open session, board members voted to reject the fact finder’s recommendation.
This site was updated on February 26, 2013