Fire, Police Salaries to Be Focus of Debate

In the latest development in the protracted contract dispute between the city and its public safety employees, Councilman Dave Sullivan and Fire Department Capt. Bruce Spencer will meet today to debate whether the salaries of police and fire department officers are adequate.

Public safety employees have been working without a pay raise for five years and in recent months have picketed and conducted a sickout to voice their frustration.

The debate stems from a presentation Sullivan gave to the council two weeks ago in which he provided statistics indicating that public safety officers have earned salaries that have kept up with the cost of living. He also offered to debate anyone on the subject.

Police and fire officers disagreed and accused him of spreading inaccurate information. Spencer decided to take Sullivan up on his offer.

"I have not kept up with the cost of living, and I look forward debating you," Spencer told Sullivan and the council during a recent meeting.

Sullivan said his facts indicate the salaries are ahead of inflation. The public debate will take place at 7 p.m. the City Council Chambers, 2000 Main St.

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