City of Winnipeg won’t appeal arbitrator’s decision in pension battle with police union: Mayor

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Winnipeg’s mayor says the city will not appeal an arbitrator’s decision that found the city did not have the right to unilaterally modify terms of the Winnipeg Police Service’s pension plan.

In November, city council approved changes to the plan that would have seen overtime cut from officers’ pensionable earnings and their contributions jump from eight per cent to 11.5 per cent.

Meanwhile, city contributions to the plan would have fallen from 18.5 per cent to 11.5 per cent.

The Winnipeg Police Association filed a grievance with the city and took the matter to arbitration, and late last month the arbitrator ruled in favour of the police union.

The WPA was awarded $40,000 in damages and each member was awarded $400 in the decision.

On Thursday, Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman said the city will not appeal the decision.

“I can confirm today that I am not prepared to support a judicial review, as well I haven’t heard from any member of council that has expressed support for such a review,” said Bowman.

“When council decided to move forward with the proposed changes to the Winnipeg Police Service pension plan, the end goal was to achieve greater sustainability for taxpayers.