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Louisville Metro, police union reach deal on employment contracts

 Two Louisville Metro Police Department cruisers are parked under an overpass in Louisville.
J. Tyler Franklin
Louisville Public Media
Two Louisville Metro Police Department cruisers parked under an overpass in Louisville.

Louisville Metro has reached a deal with the city’s police union for new employment contracts for rank-and-file officers, as well as sergeants, lieutenants and captains.

The proposed agreements between Louisville Metro and the River City Fraternal Order of Police provides a work contract for LMPD’s sworn staff that will be in effect until June 30, 2027. The collective bargaining agreement dictates things like officer pay, discipline and how complaints against officers are handled.

The proposed collective bargaining agreement was released quietly this week, attached to the Metro Council meeting agenda for Thursday night with no public notice from the Mayor’s Office,or the union, that negotiations had concluded. It will still need to be approved by Metro Council and the officers covered under the contract.

Contacted by LPM News Thursday afternoon, a spokesperson for Mayor Craig Greenberg, initially said the administration would release more details “in the coming days.” Greenberg’s Press Secretary Scottie Ellis then provided a statement after this story was published saying the mayor’s top priority is “ to make Louisville a safer city and that requires a well-trained, trusted, transparent and fully staffed police department.”

“These agreements address our 200+ officer shortage directly by offering a competitive wage, a four-year contract for a longer commitment to our hardworking officers and changes to overtime to allow a better work/life balance,” Ellis said. “These agreements will also expand transparency by preserving more records, taking another step forward in Mayor Greenberg’s commitment to transparency.”

Metro Council’s Public Safety Committee sent out a press release Thursday morning announcing the committee will hold a public hearing on the proposed agreement Monday, April 15 at 5 p.m.

“I strongly believe the public should have an opportunity to review and share their comments on these agreements. I encourage the community to sign up to speak, and join us on Monday,” said District 1 Council Member Tammy Hawkins, who chairs the Public Safety Committee.

Residents interested in commenting on the contract have been given just over 24 hours to sign up, with registration closing at 4 p.m. Friday. No more than 25 people will be allowed to speak.

Anyone interested in speaking must fill out an online registration form or call the Metro Council Clerk’s office at 502-574-3902.

The two contracts — one covering police officers and sergeants, and the other for captains and lieutenants — are each around 60-pages long. There is no way to know what language has been changed or added without comparing the proposed contracts and the previous agreements side-by-side.

Louisville Metro previously approved collective bargaining agreements for LMPD’s sworn staff in November and December 2021. Those contracts expired last June, but officers have continued to operate under them while the mayor and the FOP negotiated new agreements.

Some community groups, like the Louisville Urban League and The 490 Project, asked the Greenberg administration last year to open police contract negotiations to the public and the press. They had also pressured former Mayor Greg Fischer to do the same.

Despite those demands, city officials and union leaders signed negotiation ground rules last February barring public access.

FOP Press Secretary Dave Mutchler did not respond to LPM News’ request for comment.

This story has been updated with additional information.

Roberto Roldan is the City Politics and Government Reporter for WFPL. Email Roberto at rroldan@lpm.org.

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