Borough employees receive 2% pay raise


January 6, 2022 | View PDF

Almost 60 borough employees, union and non-union, will receive a 2% raise retroactive to July 1, 2021. A second 2% raise is scheduled for July 1 of this year.

The new wage scale is the result of a collective bargaining agreement between the borough and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1547, which represents power plant operators, the line crew, port and harbor workers, water treatment plant workers and other public works employees.

The three-year IBEW contract run to June 30, 2024.

The borough traditionally extends to its non-union employees whatever pay increases are negotiated for its unionized staff. About half of the borough’s full-time employees are covered by the IBEW contract.

The borough assembly approved the July 2021 raise at a special meeting Dec. 21.

The 2% salary boost is far less than the rate of inflation in 2021.

A separate resolution will be required later this year to put the second 2% pay hike into effect for union and non-union workers.

The retroactive pay increase will be reflected in employee checks in the next payroll in January, said Mason Villarma, borough finance director. The cost of the retroactive payments to the borough will total less than $25,000, he said.

The IBEW contract also aligns 11 unionized workers — who were “grandfathered” into an older insurance cost-sharing plan — into the same structure as other borough employees for dividing health insurance premiums between the employer and employee. Those 11 workers will move from a 90% employer/10% employee payment sharing to an 85%/15% structure as of July 1, 2022, Villarma explained.

Health insurance is a substantial cost in Wrangell’s budget, totaling $1.07 million a year as the borough’s share for all its covered employees, Villarma said.


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