PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY, Va. (WDVM) — The Prince William County Board of Supervisors voted 5-2 to move forward with a collective bargaining ordinance at their Tuesday night meeting.

The ordinance will be reviewed over the coming months. The decision comes after police and fire department employees submitted petitions regarding their intent to collectively bargain back in September.

“There will be lost work hours while union officers and shop stewards meet during work hours on union business. The cost of all of this is estimated at $1,700,000 to $3,000,000 per year depending on whether collective bargaining is limited to wages and benefits (lower estimated administrative cost) or is expanded to cover all terms and conditions of employment (higher estimated administrative cost),” read the report.

To put this into perspective, the county currently expends $507,400,000 each year on employees.

Brentsville District Supervisor Jeanine Lawson, who opposed moving the ordinance forward, voiced concerns over cost as well as how discipline will be handled.

“I’d like to think that enough of you are familiar with the problems of unions across the country,” said Lawson. “The interference of the union reps that have allowed employees in the system to get away with way too many violations.”

According to a new state law, the county had 120 days to decide if it would begin working on the ordinance since the petition was filed.

Thus far, Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun and Alexandria have established collective bargaining ordinances — the only localities in the state to do so this year.

“There are four ordinances out there so we don’t have to recreate the wheel. This is just the beginning of the process,” said Board Chair Ann Wheeler.

A full report on the collective bargaining ordinance can be viewed on Prince William County’s official website.