Harford County Executive Barry Glassman on September 28 signed a memorandum of understanding with Harford County Sheriff Jeffrey R. Gahler, the Harford County Deputy Sheriff’s Union, and the Harford County Correctional Association allowing for nonbinding negotiations on wages and the employee share of healthcare premiums. Negotiations under the MOU would closely follow the process currently in place between the county executive and unions representing county employees. The new agreement reflects the intent of enabling legislation that stalled in the 2017 Maryland General Assembly. County Executive Glassman has requested that Harford County’s Senate Delegation pre-file a bill for 2018, stemming from the cooperative relationship established in the MOU.
“I am pleased that we were able to come to a mutual agreement with the sheriff and the unions that lays out a framework to talk about salary and benefits in the same way we do with county employees,” County Executive Glassman said. “We also hope to build on the nearly $5.6 million that my administration has provided since coming into office to enhance salaries for employees in the Harford County Sheriff’s Office.”
For all Harford County Sheriff’s Office employees, including civilians, the Glassman administration provided funding for salary enhancements of approximately $352,000 in fiscal year 2016, nearly $2.7 million in fiscal year 2017; and $2.5 million in the current 2018 fiscal year. Prior to these enhancements, employees had not received increases in five out of six years.
The signing of today’s MOU was a positive step in the absolute right direction,” Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler said. “This agreement will ensure all parties have a seat at the table and afford the sheriff, the unions, and the county executive the opportunity to collectively work together in shaping the budget of the Harford County Sheriff’s Office, as we focus on serving the needs of our community. I am proud of the hard work that was put forth, from all parties, and the partnership that has emerged.”
“The Harford County Deputy Sheriff’s Union is very pleased with the memorandum of understanding that was signed today with County Executive Glassman, Sheriff Gahler, and the Harford County Correctional Association,” Michael Montalvo Jr., president of the Harford County Deputy Sheriff’s Union, Local 838, said. “We appreciate all of the effort it took to get to this point and look forward to working together to ensure a cooperative process where our members’ interests will be heard and all parties concerns will be evaluated.”
“On behalf of the Harford County Correctional Association, we would like to thank Sheriff Gahler for supporting our desire to pursue collective bargaining,” Dave Wille, president of the Association, said. “We would also like to thank County Executive Barry Glassman for his support in the creation of the memorandum of understanding and his support in Annapolis this coming year. This document shows the commitment of Harford County’s government, Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Sheriff’s Union, and Correctional Association to come together and do what is best for the employees of the Harford County Sheriff’s Office.”