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Article updated: 7/23/2012 6:14 PM

Elgin police expected to get raise

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Elgin Police Department union members approved a new contract that includes raises and lasts for two years, following up on last year's zero percentage raise deal.

Now it's up to the City Council to give final approval, which should come during Wednesday's meeting.

If approved, members of the Policemen's Benevolent and Protective Association Unit 54 would see a 2 percent wage increase this year and a 2.5 percent raise in 2013. The contract's official start date is Jan. 1, 2012, which means this year's increase will also apply to wages earned since the beginning of the year.

The deal will be good through Dec. 31, 2013 when members will renegotiate with city representatives.

The issue of raises factored largely into contract discussions, which have been ongoing since last fall, according to Detective Bill Wood, former president of the union.

"The feeling is that we took a 0 percent raise last year, obviously we felt we were deserving of a raise this year," Wood said.

In the end a majority of members approved the agreement, which should take effect after the council's vote Wednesday.

"I think people are generally content with the contract," Wood said.

The starting salary for patrol officers is $60,368, according to the contract, with extra money offered to department veterans and those fluent in languages other than English.

A new physical fitness premium of $200 will be offered to officers who successfully complete a physical fitness test each year, starting this year.

The city is still negotiating with unions representing firefighters and public works employees, who are now guaranteed at least the same raises as the police officers.

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