Judge: North Vegas 'emergency' pay freeze illegal

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Updated: 1/22 1:34 pm

NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev. (AP) — A judge has ruled against cash-strapped North Las Vegas in its bid to get out of union contract provisions by declaring a fiscal emergency.

District Judge Susan Johnson ruled Tuesday that the city had no right to freeze $25 million in pay raises owed to union employees under agreements signed during the better financial times of the mid-2000s.

The raises were first suspended in June 2012, when the city declared a fiscal emergency. The freeze was renewed in August.

Johnson says the move was unconstitutional, adding that emergency declarations are meant for riots and natural disasters but not budget problems.

City leaders previously predicted that allowing the raises would spell disaster for North Las Vegas. Union leaders said after the decision that they're willing to negotiate with the city.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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