Mayor Herenton informs unions not to expect pay raises

It's a tough, dangerous job being a Memphis fire fighter or a Memphis police officer. It's an even tougher job when you know you aren't getting a raise.

Michael Williams with the Memphis Police Association says, "He has proposed that we go two years without a raise."

That he is the Mayor of Memphis who told representatives from the city's 22 unions no raises. The mayor wants a pay freeze for the next two years...that after months of negotiations by union leaders. Michael Williams with the Memphis police association says officers and negotiators fell duped by the city.

Williams continues, "So all along they kind of knew what they were going to do or the mayor knew what he was going to do."

And now the mayor doesn't have to deal with it because instead of mediation the city council has to vote for the city's best offer or the unions best offer...small raises or no raises for the 22 unions.

Memphis City Councilman E.C. Jones says, "Personally I don't feel the administration did their job by sending all of these to the city
council to make a decision."

The council does not like the position it has been put in.

Councilman Carol Chumney says, "Unfortunately our hands are tied in the impasse hearings. Because we cannot come up with an alternative plan. We either have to pick the union side or the mayors side. Our hands are tied on that it's a no win situation."

City Councilman Tom Marshall says, "We believe and treasure our firefighters and our police officers and all of those who work for the city of Memphis and its very unfortunate we're placed as a council in this position between choosing the no tax increase pledge that the council has made versus no rate increase for those who work for the city of Memphis."

Tom Marshall calls it a quagmire...a quagmire city employees might not like being caught up in.