Nassau County Legislature approves contract lifting wage freeze for union workers

The Nassau County Legislature has approved a contract that could mean a salary increase for thousands of workers.

Nassau lawmakers approved the agreements with the CSEA, PBA and Detective Association, lifting the wage freeze that lasted for three years.

The "yes" vote was greeted with cheers and applause by union workers.

CSEA President Jerry Laricchuita says he finally has good news for the more than 6,000 Nassau County workers his union represents.

"We're regular middle class workers and we don't deserve to be treated the way we were and I'm glad this legislature has taken care of business," Laricchuita told News 12.

Lifting the wage freeze is expected to cost about $120 million. The county says the money could come from installing speed cameras in 56 county school zones, increased sales tax revenues and mortgage fees.

As News 12 has reported, the PBA union agreed to several concessions in the new contract. New hires will now have to contribute to their pension and health care plans. Current officers will see some of their scheduled raises decreased or delayed. PBA President James Carver says compromise was an important part of a long, exhaustive fight to end the wage freeze.

The unions need a final approval from the Nassau Interim Finance Authority. Union leaders say they expect NIFA to vote by the end of the month.

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