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City Workers Set for 10% Pay Raises in New Labor Contracts

Written by Kevin TruongPublished May. 31, 2022 • 7:31pm
A worker power washes the sidewalk near San Francisco City Hall on March 16, 2020. | Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

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Workers would get 10% pay raises, among other benefit increases, in a proposed contract hammered out by San Francisco officials and the city’s 30-plus unions. 

Starting on July 1, workers would receive a 5.25% base raise, under the tentative deal. On July 1, 2023, they would get a 2.5% pay bump, followed by a 2.25% increase on July 1, 2024. 

The subsequent wage increases for 2023 and 2024 are slated to go into effect unless the city’s budget office projects a deficit for FY 2024 that exceeds $300 million. If the budget gap meets that mark, the raises will be delayed to Jan. 6, 2024, and June 30, 2024, respectively.

The proposed contracts will be considered by the Board of Supervisors Government Audit and Oversight Committee on Thursday before being referred to the full board on June 7.

Supervisors can only accept or reject the contracts and are unable to adjust ratified agreements struck between labor and city negotiators. 

Among the unions that have negotiated new contracts are those representing transportation and electrical workers as well as sheriff’s deputies. Aside from the base wage increases, the contracts also include the addition of Juneteenth to the holiday calendar. 

Labor groups representing physicians, firefighters and police officers are among those whose contract terms are not yet subject to negotiation.

As part of the talks, labor groups also won benefit increases for their workers. The Deputy Sheriffs’ Association, for example, includes additional longevity pay in their contract, while the Municipal Attorneys Association’s contract includes a raise in standby duty pay and a premium for lead attorneys.

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SEIU Local 1021—which represents thousands of city workers and helped organize a protest at City Hall in March calling for additional staffing and better contracts—won wage hikes for some positions beyond the base salary increases. It also came up with a plan to limit mandatory overtime.

In their latest budget update earlier this month, city analysts said the estimated cost of labor contracts over the next two years—that is, compensation for city workers—came in $180 million higher than expected in early spring.

City workers could get a 10% raise over the next two years under a new contract negotiated between labor groups and city leaders. | Getty Images

In March, analysts assumed a 3.32% increase in labor costs—an estimate tied to cost of living adjustments. Continued inflation, along with a heightened need to recruit and retain workers, likely played a role in negotiations this year, analysts say.

As a result, the budget office dropped the city’s projected surplus over the next two years from $74.7 million to a mere $15 million. The surplus was tagged at $108.1 million back in January.

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Kevin Truong can be reached at [email protected]


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