Attorney Bryant Wins Double-Digit Increases to Detail Rates for Boston Police Superior Officers

June 09, 2023

After more than five years of litigation, a neutral arbitrator has remedied the City of Boston's violation of contract language concerning detail rates paid to Boston police officers. The Arbitrator's remedial award, as recommended by Attorney Patrick Bryant, results in increases of $10-to-$21 per hour based upon rank, and represents the first increase in compensation since 2019.

The City of Boston and Boston Police Superior Officers Federation decades ago negotiated language that required detail rates "in no event will the rate of pay as set out above be less than the regular hourly rate of the various ranks described." The parties disputed the meaning of this language for years, as detail rate failed to keep pace with increases to wages. The hourly detail rates at the time were $53 for Sergeants, $55 for Lieutenants, and $60 for Captains. In 2021, the Arbitrator issued an award in favor of the Federation's 2018 grievance that the detail rates were too low. The City refused to abide by the Award and went to Superior Court to get it overturned. Instead, the Superior Court confirmed the Arbitrator's Award. 

The City kept refusing to abide by language it negotiated and interpreted by an Arbitrator. The Federation asked the Arbitrator to direct rates consistent with her interpretation. She agreed, ruling that the above contract language required the City, effective August 1, 2023, to post the following hourly rates: $62 for Sergeants, $71 for Lieutenants, and $81 for Captains. Given that Boston superior officers have worked without a wage increase since July 2019, this long overdue enhancement to wage rates should provide some temporary, if overdue, financial relief.

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