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Fire Union And City Agree To Keep Talking For Two More Weeks

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Joey Palacios | Texas Public Radio
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Fire union negotiators Ricky Poole and Mark Black hold a press conferenece at the union hall on Thursday, April 4.

Negotiations will continue between the San Antonio Professional Fire Fighters Association and the City of San Antonio for at least the next two weeks. Both sides agreed this weekend to include mediation later this month.

The fire union and the city began negotiating in February. Monday, April 8, would have been the day impasse could be declared under state law.

However, over the weekend, the two sides agreed to extend negotiations by 15 days, the maximum amount of time allowed by the state.

Last week, the union offered an extension agreement and the city countered by including a two-day mediation session with former Texas Supreme Court Justice Deborah Hankinson.

At first union negotiators seemed to not be interested, but in a letter on Friday, Union Negotiator Ricky Poole said the union agreed to mediation for the “greater good of continuing a dialogue between the parties.”

The agreement was signed on Saturday. In a statement, City Attorney Andy Segovia said, “By involving a neutral third party we have a better opportunity to reach a resolution that is fair to both our firefighters and our taxpayers.”

Joey Palacios can be reached at Joey@TPR.org and on Twitter at @Joeycules.