Birmingham City Council meets with city worker union leaders Monday

By Jonathan Hardison

BIRMINGHAM,AL (WBRC) - Birmingham's city council and the leaders of 4 major city worker unions will try to have a meeting of the minds at city hall tomorrow.

The leaders of groups like the firefighters, police officers, and public works employees will sit down with council members to talk about ways to avoid a 10% pay cut that Mayor Bell is proposing for next year's budget.

The council held its first public hearing on the budget last week and got an earful from city employees who oppose the pay cut and say there are other ways to balance the budget.

Tomorrow the union leaders are hoping to hash out some possible savings solutions.

"It sends the wrong message because we have helped reduce the crime statistics, street and sanitation has made the city a cleaner place, and our fire protection is one of the best in the area," said Sgt. Dexter Cunningham, president of the Birmingham FOP lodge. "And the thanks we're going to get for that is a 10% reduction in salary? That doesn't add up."

The council and union meeting will happen tomorrow afternoon at city hall.

Mayor Bell says the salary reductions are a painful but necessary step to balance the city's lean budget going into the next fiscal year that starts July 1st.

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