Long Beach police union votes against ratifying contract

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The future of the Long Beach Police Department is now up in the air after union members voted against ratifying a contract Thursday.

The Long Beach City Council approved a 12-year police contract Tuesday and warned that if the union doesn't ratify the contract then the city may have to request that the Nassau County Police Department take over.

Civic leader and attorney Roy Lester was at Tuesday's meeting and says people in the audience were shocked that the council would approve a contract that wasn't ratified. He says the council also wouldn't disclose the terms of the contract.

News 12 Long Island obtained a copy of the contract. It includes a 24% raise for police officers over 12 years and puts a limit on payouts, vacation and sick time. It also requires contributions to health insurance.

Labor counsel Terry O'Neil tells News 12 that a mediator asked the council not to disclose the terms until after it's ratified.

O'Neill says telling residents that the police department would have to fold if the contract isn't ratified isn't a threat, it's a fiscal reality.

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