State police reject wage freeze–and layoff protection

The Connecticut State Police Union voted overwhelmingly Friday to reject a two-year wage freeze, meaning their membership of 1,100 is without the four-year promise of job security extended to nearly 44,000 other unionized state employees.

The union ratified the pension-and-health portion of the concession deal approved Thursday by the other 14 unions in the State Employees Bargaining Agent Coalition, but the no-layoff guarantee was conditioned on acceptance of the wage freeze.

The rejection by a vote of 657 to 123 means that the administration of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy now has to decide if it will go ahead with the threatened layoffs of 56 new troopers or the cancellation of a new trooper class of 80.

The union intends to go on the offensive Monday morning, holding a rally outside the state Capitol that it says will attract hundreds of troopers, other law enforcement officers and their families.

The state, the union says, is in violation of a statutory mandate to maintain a force of 1,248 troopers.

The union voted 448 to 329 to accept the pension-and-health changes.

The state police union is one of 34 bargaining units. The only other bargaining unit to reject the wage freeze and forgo job security was a unit representing 400 correction supervisors.