Citizen Board Backs Union in Police Contract Dispute

Lakeland’s Citizen Police Advisory Board — whose members were appointed by city commissioners, the city manager and police chief — agreed Monday to draft a letter supporting the police union’s push for higher pay and improved benefits, The Ledger reports. A combination of no raises for 15 months and a system that takes 20 years to reach top pay has made it difficult for the department to recruit and retain officers, union representatives told the board.