This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Five Saratoga Springs police officers are looking at taking legal action against the city, saying they haven't been getting the pay raises they were promised when they were hired.
Attorney Justin Elswick represents the five officers who say when they were hired they were promised in writing 5-percent yearly pay raises until they maxed out in their level. The raises happened in 2008, but not since, according to the officers.
"Police Chief (Gary) Hicken has actually submitted those budgets, and the city has refused, so that's the issue we're trying to resolve," Elswick said.
Elswick said the officers are going through a grievance process before any lawsuit is filed. He said the city has responded to initial filings by saying the city has legislative discretion to determine whetehr or not salary increases are given.
Elswick said most of the officers work a secondary job to make ends meet, and it's tough to not get their pay increases while city leaders have seen some pay increases during the same time period.
These officers put their lives at risk … and they are committed to their work and very proud of what they do.
Leaving the police department is an option for the officers, but one they would prefer not to exercise. Elswick said retaliation is a concern, though.
"They like the city, they like the people they work with, they like their community, so the hope is to resolve this," Elswick said. "If the city refuses to do this, we will take it up to the court of appeal we feel the rights of the officers need to be vindicated, here."