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Mayor Cancels Affordable Housing Announcement Amid Teacher Union Deal Talks

By Colby Hamilton on April 30, 2014 7:36pm 

 Mayor Bill de Blasio canceled a major policy release as rumors swirled the city could be near a deal with the city's teachers union.
Mayor Bill de Blasio canceled a major policy release as rumors swirled the city could be near a deal with the city's teachers union.
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DNAinfo/Colby Hamilton

CIVIC CENTER — Mayor Bill de Blasio has postponed unveiling a major housing plan amidst reports the administration is on the verge of announcing a major labor agreement with the city’s teachers union.

Administration sources confirmed Wednesday that Thursday's planned housing announcement had to be postponed as the mayor continues labor discussions with the teachers union.

A possible deal, as reported by the New York Times, could encompass nine years, including five years in back pay. A labor source said the union deal would likely include retroactive four percent raises that other unions had received from the city during recent negotiations.

A United Federation of Teachers' spokesman confirmed that negotiations are ongoing, but said that a deal would likely not happen on Wednesday, and declined to speculate when the deal would be reached. The administration was, he said, “still dealing with language issues.”

"We're going to be here awhile," the labor source said.

Should the deal happen, it would represent the first major breakthrough on the city’s outstanding labor contracts. Almost all of the city’s 300,000 workers are without current contracts. It's estimated the cost of settling the labor deals could be in the billions.

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