COUNCILMEMBER OH TO WITHDRAW AMENDMENT TO WITHHOLD $10 MILLION AFTER SEPTA OFFERS TRANSIT OFFICERS LARGEST SALARY INCREASE IN 20 YEARS

In Council News, David Oh, News by PHL Council

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Philadelphia, June 14, 2022 – After several weeks of negotiations, a tentative agreement has been reached on a wage increase proposal that will bring about the most significant increase in
salary for SEPTA Transit Officers in more than 20 years. In the agreement, the post-graduation starting salary will be increased 11%, from $49,860 to $62,387. New rates are scheduled to go into effect no later than June 19, 2022. As a result of Transit Police President Bervine and Councilman David Oh’s ongoing concerns, the Fraternal Order of Transit Police (FOTP) Executive
Board recently engaged in conversations with SEPTA to bring about this long-needed increase. This proposal will contribute significantly to end the recent struggles regarding the recruitment
and retention being experienced by the Transit Police Department, and bring about an increase in the number of qualified officers on the force needed to combat the rise of crime and violence on SEPTA.

Councilman Oh had proposed an Amendment to the City of Philadelphia’s Fiscal Year 2023  operating budget, Bill No. 220286, that withholds $10M from SEPTA’s annual fiscal year
subsidy. Councilman Oh has made this proposal pending SEPTA’s commitment to hire more transit police officers and raise wages to make salaries more competitive with other police forces
in the region. Recently, SEPTA has invested in private safety personnel creating a shortage of uniformed transit police officers, with authority to intervene during a crisis.
President Bervine strongly supports the Councilman’s proposed budget amendment and has said “On behalf of the Fraternal Order of Transit Police, and all the women and men of the Transit Police Department we represent, we would like to thank Councilman David Oh for his leadership on this important public safety issue.”

Based on this tentative agreement, Councilman Oh will be withdrawing his amendment because of the progress in contract negotiations and said, “This is a significant step to increase the
number and retention of sworn transit officers and to help manage the dramatic rise in crime and violence on SEPTA. I am happy to see that SEPTA recognizes the importance of this issue.”

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