City council approves salary increases for Laredo Fire Department

Published: May. 31, 2023 at 4:43 PM CDT
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LAREDO, TX. (KGNS) - The City of Laredo met for a special meeting to discuss a salary increase proposal for the Laredo Fire Department.

After nearly a year of back-and-forth discussions between the City of Laredo and the Firefighters Association, both parties have finally come to a resolution.

On Wednesday, it was revealed what the department was asking for.

Vice president of the union Jose Alaniz believes firefighters part of the union have given up certain rights.

Like not being allowed to go on strike or not go to work and in exchange, they are allowed to collectively bargain for raises or benefits they need.

Alaniz said after five years of not seeking a wage increase, it was finally time to ask for one.

Although the item was approved, before the vote one council member wanted to wait and discuss the agreement further.

“If we could’ve waited just until Monday not only would we have a chance to review everything and have a better understanding of what we’re signing for the next four years, but also allow the public to come and voice their concerns or voice their approval,” said Cigarroa. “It’s a public forum, so we should give our citizens the opportunity to do that, to participate in a decision-making process, and I just feel like this didn’t allow that because we didn’t have the final contract until today.”

Another councilmember who was in favor of speeding up the process was District 1 Councilmember Gilbert Gonzalez who said it was an easy decision.

Gonzalez said this contract has been in the works for months and hopes that delaying the approval of contracts does not become a habit for city council.

Coming up in our later newscasts, we hear from the firefighters association on the process behind this bargaining agreement and why they believe they were underpaid before.

The motion proposed by Melissa Cigarroa to wait to approve the item was only backed by Alyssa Cigarroa.

In the end, the motion to pass the bargaining agreement was approved.

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