The Albany City Council and one of the city’s employee unions have been unable to agree on a new labor contract providing, among other things, certain percentage increases in wages. News reports haven’t mentioned to what amounts the percentages would apply, so I asked.
At last report, the city’s final offer was for a four-year contract with these wage hikes: 2.5 percent as of last July 1, and then equaling the Consumer Price Index with a cap of 3 percent on July 1 of each of the next three years.
The union’s final request was for a three-year contract with wage boosts of 2.5 percent as of last July 1; then the CPI with a cap of 3 percent on July 1, 2019, followed by the CPI, but at least 2 percent and capped at 4 percent, on July 1, 2020.
So what, on average, are the current wage amounts to which those increases would apply?
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) represents 177 Albany city employees in what’s called the general unit and another seven employees in the transit unit, Danette Jamison, the city’s human resources director, told me last month. They include a wide variety of occupations, such as office administrative staff, engineers, planners, maintenance technicians, librarians, information technology staff, recreation coordinators, accounting specialists, and others.
Their mean or average monthly pay is $4,630.25 or $55,563 per year. The mean of their total monthly compensation including benefits is $7,700, or $92,400 per year.
The lowest-paid member of the bargaining unit makes $2,073 in wages per month, or $24,876 per year. And the highest monthly wage in the unit is $8,351, which translates to $100,212 per year.
The parties disagree on other issues as well, such as pay for employees on standby and so forth. But as for basic wages, I thought it would be helpful to Albany readers to get an idea of the current amounts, not just the percentages by which wages would be raised. (hh)
The story has been edited to fix a dumb mistake in describing what “mean” means. What I described was the “median,” not the mean.