Providence mayor implements contested firefighter staffing

Mayor Jorge Elorza

By The Associated Press

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) _ The mayor's plan for staffing the Providence fire department is taking effect after failed negotiations with the union, which has said it will ask a court to block it on Monday.

Mayor Jorge Elorza's plan seeks to reduce overtime by increasing the average work week in exchange for an 8 percent pay raise that would count toward a firefighter's pension.

After months of negotiations, Elorza said he would implement it Sunday if there was no deal by 5 p.m. Saturday.              

Union president Paul Doughty did not return a call for a comment after the deadline passed.           

Elorza says his plan could save $5 million a year in overtime beginning in fiscal year 2017.

© The Associated Press / WLNE-TV 2015