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Disability Benefits-“Current annual salary”

WI Court of Supreme Court

Case Name: Milwaukee Police Supervisors Organization v. City of Milwaukee

Case No.: 2019AP001319

Officials: Rebecca Grassl Bradley, J.

Focus: Disability Benefits-“Current annual salary”

The Milwaukee City Charter entitles firefighters injured on the job to duty disability retirement (DDR) benefits, which provide monthly wage replacement payments to firefighters unable to continue active service. As with all pension benefits provided to City of Milwaukee employees, the City of Milwaukee Employees’ Retirement System (MERS) administers DDR benefits. Under the Milwaukee City Charter, MERS must pay an eligible DDR beneficiary a percentage of the “current annual salary for such position which he held at the time of such injury.” MCC § 36-05-C-1-a. “Current annual salary” is undefined in the Charter, and its meaning is the subject of this dispute.

The circuit court properly granted Local 215’s motion for summary judgment. The charter, read alongside the CBA, requires MERS to include the 5.8% pension offset payment in the “current annual salary” used to calculate DDR benefits for beneficiaries hired before October 3, 2011.


Decided 03/21/23

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