Prop B back-and-forth between mayor, Houston firefighters continues

HOUSTON – The back-and-forth between Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association over how to implement Proposition B continues.

Turner sent a letter to Patrick "Marty" Lancton, president of the firefighters' union, Wednesday proposing the phasing in of firefighter raises over a period of five years in order to avoid potential layoffs.

The mayor has said up to 500 firefighters could be laid off.

Voters approved Prop B last November.

The mayor wrote in the letter:

"I write to make clear the City's proposal on the resolution of Prop B implementation. I do not want to lay off anyone. To accomplish this, I ask the Union to agree to phase in the cost of implementing Prop B.

"I propose that Prop B be implemented over five years. The proposal takes into account the language of Prop B and factors in educational requirements for parity between Police and Fire. The chart that follows reflects the costs the City would incur and shows the incremental and cumulative costs. This matches the allocation of pay by seniority proposed by the Union.

"Spreading the costs will be in the best interest of all Houstonians."