SPOKANE, Wash — At the center of the proposed Spokane Police Guild collective bargaining agreement is the police ombudsman's role.
The reason most Spokane City Council members said they would not vote for the proposed contract is because it did not allow the Office of the Police Ombudsman to independently investigated allegations of misconduct.
So, what happens now? There are few different scenarios.
The contract Spokane police are working under now expired nearly four years ago.
Since the city council rejected the proposed new contract, Council President Breean Beggs said it will go back to the mediator, who will gather the Mayor's Office and Police Guild and try to reach to a new agreement that the city council would pass.
Monday night, Beggs told KREM 2 the city council wants the contract to comply with the Spokane city charter.
If the mediator cannot reach a new agreement, Beggs said it will be referred to the public employee relations commissions.
That commission would decide what parts of the contract need to be resolved by a neutral third party.
Meantime, Beggs said the state legislature may be considering a new law that would take the Police Ombudsman activities out of the bargaining process completely.
"If that law were to pass, then it would be retroactive and then this whole issue would go away completely," Beggs said. "It would just be the pay and benefits, working conditions I would imagine in that situation we would come to an agreement pretty quickly."
Council President Beggs expects nothing will be resolved at least for a few months to a year.
So as negotiations continue, nothing will change until a new contract is approved.