Illinois City Sues IAFF Local To Contract Out EMS

An Illinois city seeking to contract-out emergency medical services from its fire department, is suing to enforce an arbitration ruling allowing its plan to move forward. The City of Mattoon filed suit last week in Coles County Circuit Court against Mattoon Firefighters IAFF Local 691.

Last summer, the city announced plans to contract out EMS transport services as a cost-savings measure. Local 691 filed a grievance with the Illinois Labor Relations Board that was heard by a state arbitrator, George Fitzsimmons. Fitzsimmons ruled in April that the city could proceed with its plans but had to bargain the impact of the changes with Local 691.

Last Friday, the city filed suit to enforce the arbitrator’s ruling contending that the union has failed to negotiate the impacts leaving it unable to implement the cost-savings measures. Meanwhile, the union is pointing to a separate arbitration ruling that found the city violated the collective bargaining agreement by reducing staffing from 30 to 26.

Here is more on the story. The complaint was not available but will be posted here if we can obtain a copy.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.
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