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PR- 389-05
October 12, 2005


Productivity-based Collective Bargaining Agreement Includes Over 17% Wage Increase and Covers over 6,000 Sanitation Workers

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Harry Nespoli, President of the Uniformed Sanitationmen's Association (USA), announced that a tentative contract settlement has been reached on a collective bargaining agreement covering the period from November 23, 2002 through March 1, 2007.  The agreement covers four years, three months and seven days, and includes a more than 17% wage increase, a modified salary structure for newly-hired employees and tangible productivity enhancements, including an innovative one-worker truck program. It also includes a contract extension, a new annuity differential, new productivity differentials, a welfare fund increase and a uniform allowance increase.  The agreement is funded through productivity savings consistent with the parameters of this round of bargaining to pay for increased productivity.

“This landmark agreement, including the differentials and productivity payments, is funded through productivity savings generated by Sanitation Workers whose day-to-day efforts continue to improve the quality of life in New York City,” said Mayor Bloomberg.  “We have all observed the men and women of the Department of Sanitation handle some of the biggest challenges that New York City faces and we are pleased to have reached this important agreement through the collaborative and cooperative process of collective bargaining.  Congratulations to Harry Nespoli for his achievements in this contract on behalf of the deserving members of the Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association.”

The principal features of the settlement, including compounded wage increases of over 17% during the contract for incumbent Sanitation Workers, are as follows:

  • 5% effective November 23, 2002
  • 5%, compounded, effective November 23, 2003
  • 3%, compounded, effective March 2, 2005
  • 3.15%, compounded, effective March 2, 2006

At the end of this contract, a Sanitation Worker’s maximum salary will be $57,392.

For newly hired Sanitation Workers, effective January 1, 2006, a modified starting salary of $26,000 shall apply.

Productivity Initiatives

  • Refuse and Recycling Targets:  The parties have mutually agreed to have the Citywide and local district labor management committees recalibrate the Citywide target average tons per truck shift in the refuse collection and recycling programs to 10.7 tons per truck shift for refuse collection and to 6.2 tons per truck shift for recycling collection, respectively.

    Savings from this initiative will fund a new annuity contribution in the flat amount of $2.00 per shift.  Eligibility for payment will begin in a district once the district begins the new program.  The annuity contribution will be paid on a periodic basis (monthly) subject to a determination that the standards for receiving the payment have been met.

  • Dumping-on-Shift Targets: The parties have mutually agreed to a new program for refuse and recycling crews that represents another key part of the comprehensive productivity agreement. The parties will establish new performance measurements for attaining savings to be derived from trucks "dumping on shift" i.e., trucks complete the route, travel to the dump site and unload the vehicle within the prescribed tour.

    Savings that result will be used to provide a differential payment in the amount of $5.00 per qualifying shift for achieving and maintaining those performance standards.

    This new differential will be paid for each truck dumped on shift (only one payment shall be made for a split-body truck used to collect mixed paper as well as plastics, glass and metals) when the route is cleaned.

  • Roll-on/Roll-off Program – One-Person Operation: The parties have mutually agreed to an innovative program – a "Roll-on/Roll-off" productivity agreement – using one Sanitation Worker in place of a two Sanitation Worker crew on certain vehicles to be determined by the Department without any reduction in current productivity standards.  This is the first time Sanitation will use a one-person collection truck.  Savings from this important element of the overall productivity program generate a new differential in the amount of $80.00 per qualifying shift.

Other Contract Features

  • Welfare Fund: Effective November 23, 2004, there shall be an increase in the City’s contribution to the active and retiree welfare funds in the pro rata amount of $83 per annum.
  • Uniform Allowance: Effective November 23, 2005, there shall be an increase in the uniform allowance in the amount of $100.00.
  • Pension Committee: A Labor-Management Pension Committee will be established to investigate pension enhancement legislation for eligible Sanitation Workers.The Committee will analyze the actual costs and additional contribution rates required to provide this benefit without any cost to the City. Upon mutual acceptance of the Committee's recommendations, including plan design and costs, the parties agree to jointly support the legislation necessary to implement the benefit changes.
  • Staten Island Transfer Station: The Department of Sanitation intends to assign members of the Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association to operate the Staten Island Transfer Station on a full-service basis.

The Mayor thanked Deputy Mayor Marc V. Shaw, Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty and First Deputy Commissioner Michael Bimonte, USA President Harry Nespoli and his Committee, Labor Commissioner James F. Hanley and First Deputy Commissioner Pamela S. Silverblatt and their team, and Budget Director Mark Page and his staff for their efforts in reaching this Agreement.


Edward Skyler / Robert Lawson   (212) 788-2958


Vito Turso   (Sanitation)
(646) 885-5020

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