Says Fairfield officials, employees need to honor contract

To the Editor:

As I sit and watch clips of Fair TV and read our local papers, there seems to be something missing from this entire ordeal.

For full disclosure, I am a retired educator from a neighboring community, where I served as a president of the Education Association. Add to that, I served as a member of the Connecticut General Assembly as a state representative. Prior to that I was elected to the Representative Town Meeting, then elected to three terms ( 18 years ) on the Board of Finance. Most recently, I completed my two terms as a fire commissioner.

It is very basic. A contract is a contract and that may be the inconvenient truth, that some commissioners, Board of Finance members and even some department heads think that they can circumvent. When someone applies for retirement, it is a very private and personal decision. This has an impact upon the personnel that remain.

In all my years as a fire commissioner, I never was called to court, as some previous commissioners managed to be sued. This current situation seems to beg that question. If this is in the current contract my understanding is that is the one that needs to be followed. As an educator, we have to have our last best three years to calculate our retirement compensation. So if there needs to be changes, the only fair and logical way is to meet at the negotiation table and present the facts and figures and move on.

In Fairfield, there seems to be quite a political grandstanding by some of our local elected officials. When our Fairfield fire fighters were there to keep our town safe and secure and deal with the entire Sandy situation, the same elected officials were singing their praises. We had a delay in the testing due to Sandy. So as were wrap up all these loose ends, we need to continue to honor those who serve us.

Where I come from a contract is a contract. If you are not please with parts of it, then do it the correct way. Meet at the table and iron our the differences. Fairfield has a fine reputation and I know our elected officials can act in a more civil manner. We are counting on it.

 

Susan P. Barrett

Fairfield

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