The Austin Police Association is calling on city council to reinstate their soft pay before the end of the month. The issue is set to be on the council's agenda this week and according to the APA it will affect their youngest officer’s stipends.
The Austin police department has been operating without a contract for more than four months. Back in December council heard more than an hour of testimony from police transparency advocates and police supporters. Council voted to direct the city manager to reinstate several pay stipends.
APA president Ken Casady said the stipends include court overtime, bilingual pay and education incentive pay. "For those who do have every stipend will be losing about 1000 to 200 dollars a month which is a huge hit for a young family,” said Casady. "If the city thinks this is going to be a bargaining ship than it's not. If we need to go another year or two, our officers will do that.”
Casady said it's been a rough year for the department. officers have been injured on duty, poisoned by defective work vehicles and the tireless hours spent responding to the Austin bombings.
City council member Jimmy Flannigan commends the department for their hard work but argues there is still much to be done. "It doesn't change that there have been other issues for the department and a clear mandate from the community that we can do better," Flannigan said. "All the bargaining now is about the long term deal there are no more short term extensions being contemplated."
APD’s stipends will expire May 24th.