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Wilbraham Select Board signs latest union contract

Date: 3/5/2012

March 5, 2012

By Chris Maza

WILBRAHAM — The Wilbraham Board of Selectmen signed the new contract for the Local 98 union, which represents all town employees, excluding police and fire personnel, at its Feb. 27 meeting.

The contract, which was agreed upon nearly a month prior, Town Administrator Robert Weitz explained, is a three-year agreement with yearly salary increases of 1 percent in the 2012 and 2 percent in 2013 and 2014.

It also implements a set of uniform standards for benefit contribution rates for the town and its employees, something the town has lacked previously.

"This creates a uniform contribution rate of 68 percent [from the town]," he said. "There used to be a hodgepodge of different rates for different positions and different departments, but this brings them all under one set of guidelines."

Selectmen James Thompson and Robert Boilard, with Chair Patrick Brady absent, also agreed on a motion to set the same standards for full-time non-union employees, including elected officials.

Town Clerk Beverly Litchfield, who was in attendance at the meeting, asked the board if there was any chance of gradually increasing the contribution rate as opposed to implementing the increase all at once.

"It is a significant jump for some people," she said. "Especially those who are on the lower end of the pay scale, it can pose a significant challenge."

Thompson said that while he understood the concern, the board and Weitz saw no legal way to make the changes on a gradual scale.


The board also gave its blessing to Scott Stawko, owner of Krazy Jake's Drive In, to expand his operation at 2537 Boston Road.

Stawko explained to the board that he planned to expand his dining room to make room for 50 to 60 additional seats, as well as set up a 12-seat bar in the back of the restaurant. He also proposed adding a party room in which organizations such as sports teams, as well as private citizens could rent to avoid congestion in the dining room.

He further stated the expanded dining room would have a more "restauranty" feel than the atmosphere that currently exists, while two televisions would be included in the bar area.

Stawko also spoke of expanding the food menu.

"The menu started as one sheet of paper. Since then there have been seven menu changes and there's another one coming" he said. "Right now, we are kind of a burger and seafood place. I would like to offer more seafood and we'll probably also expand the sandwich menu."

Addressing alcohol concerns, Stawko explained that Krazy Jake's has a three-drink-per-sitting policy and that he and two other managers are TIPS (Training and Intervention Procedures for Servers of alcohol) certified. He added that no alcohol will be allowed outside.

Boilard stressed his hope that Krazy Jake's would remain a family-friendly environment.

"My one concern is that I know what you are, but I'm not sure what you're trying to be," he said. "My hope is that you stay a family restaurant."

Stawko reassured the board, saying he hoped to create a similar atmosphere to casual dining restaurants frequented by vacationing families on Cape Cod.

With the expansion comes new hours. The restaurant, which was previously open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. during the week, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday, will now be open from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday.

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