With the city of Los Angeles facing its worst budget crisis in decades, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa asked city unions to make sacrifices -- and now it looks like at least one of them is prepared to do just that.
The United Firefighters of Los Angeles agreed to $12 million in concessions for a new contract that would cover its 3,500 members, although the deal still has to be ratified by the rank and file.
"The city wanted a little bit more and we gave them a little bit more,'' union president Pat McOsker said. " ... We have to have it ratified by our membership, of course, but we have
a tentative agreement and we think we have a deal now, a contract."
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He said the city's Executive Employee Relations Committee, which includes Villaraigosa and key members of the City Council, also tentatively approved the numbers -- apparently after the union agreed to shave the $12 million -- even though the city originally asked for $13 million in concessions.
It's not clear from where the savings will come. The city already has a "brownout" policy, in effect since last summer, that shutters engine companies one at a time throughout the city to save money. Los Angeles has a $212 million-and-growing deficit and is looking at another $485 million in red ink come July.
The union has been without a contract since June.
-With reporting from Weekly wire services. Got news? Email us.