AUGUSTA — New contracts with firefighters are up for ratification by city councilors tonight.

The proposed contracts with two unions representing firefighters and Fire Department battalion chiefs would run until June 2014.

Councilors are to consider the contracts when they meet at 7 p.m. in council chambers at Augusta City Center.

The contracts are retroactive to 2010, when the old contracts expired. The deals would provide no raises the first year, a 2 percent raise this year and a 3 percent raise in 2012, according to Ralph St. Pierre, finance director and assistant city manager.

Benefits changes would include an increase in employee contribution to health insurance from 10 percent to 20 percent, effective in July.

The contract proposals, which St. Pierre said the unions have ratified, resulted after mediation and fact-finding took place between the two sides. The unions represent 39 firefighters and four battalion chiefs.

The city and other bargaining units that represent about 80 percent of the city’s 230 employees agreed to new three-year contracts following mediation last year. The firefighters were the last group to agree to new contracts, so all union contracts will have been settled if councilors approve the proposals, St. Pierre said.

Councilors are also scheduled to:

* hear a presentation on a proposed redevelopment and reuse plan for the former Augusta/Statler Tissue mill site from John Melrose of Eaton Peabody Consulting Group.

The city took the site for nonpayment of taxes in 2009. Since then, it has had a contractor level the former mill buildings on the 18-acre site, which has about a mile of river frontage near the city’s downtown.

* recognize J.S. McCarthy Printing Co. for the Augusta firm’s contribution of a poster that will be used to promote the downtown.

* consider final approval of a proposed new herbicide ordinance and policy.

* hold a public hearing and consider granting a liquor license to the operators of Great Wall Buffet, at 1 Anthony Ave.

* consider authorizing the city manager to negotiate the use of three parcels of city land for “acceptable monetary compensation” that will go toward to the Lithgow Library Capital Fund. Central Maine Power Co. is cleaning up pollution left on the land off Mount Vernon Avenue and next to Bond Brook by a former gas plant.

Keith Edwards — 621-5647

[email protected]


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