Elsewhere in the State and across the Nation, contract negotiations have become difficult and facing enormous pressure from all sides of the political spectrum. La Marque has even topped some of these issues in a hostile and unstable political environment. This year’s negotiations were short and painful due to budget revenues, tax rolls and political instability in the City. During this year’s process, the City Manager was very aggressive until he decided to resign and go to work in real estate. Recall elections and division in the City Council also made this contract a mine field. The La Marque Police Association grasped early on the hostile climate and voted to prevent public fights over bad budgets and worse politicians. President Forrest Gandy and the membership adopted a one year extension of the current agreement. Once it made it to Council for ratification, it was discovered that there had been changes made to the negotiated agreement, to include modification of the salary scales, removal of benefits and language added that was never discussed. The negotiations went back to the table to protect the integrity of the agreement and a strong warning to the City about its obligation to bargain in good faith. Even if there is no monetary changes to an agreement does not mean that an Association can let its guard down.