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City and employees reach tentative deal

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Negotiators from the Corporation of Delta and the Canadian Union of Public Local 454 worked through the night to reach a tentative contract deal Thursday morning.

"We went without a lunch or a dinner break, and at the end of it, we had a handshake deal," said Delta chief administrative officer George Harvie. "We're very pleased."

The union represents more than 850 civic employees and has been without a contract since the end of 2011.

Harvie said he couldn't give details of the new contract until it had been ratified by both union members and Delta council, which is expected to occur early next month.

The contract comes before council for its approval on Jan. 14.

Delta negotiated directly with its employees after leaving the Metro Vancouver Labour Relations Bureau in the spring.

"It allows us to speak directly with our employees, without any outside influence," said Harvie. "It worked very well with [Delta Fire Department] negotiations, and it worked well this time as well.

"I certainly have no desire to go back."

Last month, CUPE Local 454 agreed to have a mediator help settle the dispute after negotiations stalled, and Grant McArthur, a senior mediator with the Labour Relations Board of B.C. was brought in.

"He assisted us getting back at the table again," said Harvie.

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