Mayor Eric Garcetti and the union representing Los Angeles Police Department officers announced Tuesday they struck a tentative agreement to avoid layoffs amid the city's economic downturn resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Los Angeles Police Protective League agreed to defer two scheduled salary increases for the 2021-22 fiscal year to the following year:
- a 3% base wage increase, which was scheduled to take effect in January 2022, will be delayed 12 months; and
- a 1.5% base wage increase, which was scheduled to take effect in June 2022, will be delayed six months.
The city in return committed to no layoffs of sworn LAPD employees this fiscal year. The city will also provide officers with at least $70 million in cash overtime over the next three fiscal years.
"Our police officers do heroic work to keep Angelenos safe, and this year they have been asked to do more with less," Garcetti said. "I am pleased that we have reached a tentative deal that prevents sworn layoffs and provides the savings necessary to protect critical City services during this historic, pandemic-driven economic downturn."
LAPPL President Craig Lally said the agreement provides clarity to officers during a time when little is certain due to the global pandemic and economic struggles.
"Officers have continued to protect our residents during these very trying and dangerous times and deserve to be treated fairly and have their sacrifices recognized," Lally said.
"We believe this agreement does that and our Board of Directors is unanimous in recommending our members ratify it."
Officials said the ratification vote would occur soon, but did not provide specifics.
"This agreement with the PPL preserves our level of public safety by ensuring the city will not have to lay off hundreds of police officers," said Councilman Joe Buscaino, a member of the City Council's Public Safety Committee.
"At a time when the crime rate in the city is rising, I would like to thank each and every officer for considering deferring their already negotiated and agreed upon raises so that we can retain the resources necessary to improve public safety."
This is the third deal struck by the city to avoid layoffs amid the budget crisis.
Garcetti announced on Jan. 12 the city reached a tentative deal with its non-sworn employees to avoid layoffs by delaying their 2% raise, which was scheduled for that January, and another 2% raise that was scheduled for June.
The raises were pushed into the 2022-23 budget year.
Two days later, Garcetti announced the city reached a deal with the firefighters' union to avoid layoffs and temporary closures of fire stations.
The deal delayed firefighters' scheduled salary increase by 18 months.