Judge orders Morgantown, firefighters union back to mediation

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Monongalia County Circuit Court Judge Phillip Gaujot has ordered the City of Morgantown and members of the International Association of Firefighters Local 313 back to mediation over the holiday pay dispute.

Gaujot ordered the move following a hearing Wednesday hearing. The two sides did tell the judge they were close to a settlement.

More than 50 Morgantown union firefighters filed a lawsuit in June 2019 alleging they had been paid for 12 hours of holiday pay when they worked a 24-hour shift.

According to state code, if a firefighter works on a legal holiday, or if the holiday falls on the firefighter’s day off, the firefighter is entitled to equivalent time off on another day or pay at time-and-a-half.

Morgantown city council fixed that issue last year. Now, firefighters are asking for five years back pay.

The city is offering pay for 16 hours of paid time off while firefighters want 24 hours.

Judge Gaujot asked both sides Wedneday why they came to court over an eight-hour difference. He then ordered them back to mediation.

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