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updated: 9/5/2012 4:51 PM

Carol Stream OKs sergeants contract

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Carol Stream has inked a three-year contract with the six-member police sergeants union -- the first contract with the sergeants, who the Illinois Labor Relations Board ruled in 2010 had the right to unionize.

The deal calls for salary increases of 3 percent retroactive to May 1, 2011, 2 percent retroactive to May 1, and 2.25 percent on May 1, 2013. It also implements a step system.

The contract, approved by the village board this week and members of the union previously, runs through April 30, 2014.

Village officials said negotiations were made difficult by the economic climate, but both sides made "good faith efforts" to reach agreement on an initial contract.

"This contract involved a significant cooperative effort between the village and union employees to develop terms and conditions that are both fair and equitable for both sides," said Caryl Rebholz, the village's employee relations director, in a memo to the village board.

The two sides began negotiations early in 2011, soon after the state labor relations board certified the Metropolitan Alliance of Police as the collective bargaining representative for sergeants in the Carol Stream Police Department.

Eight bargaining sessions took place, but with the more economically driven issues remaining at an impasse, mediation began in September 2011, Rebholz said.

"The extended time period to reach mutual agreement in this contract is not uncommon when bargaining an initial contract," she wrote.

Carol Stream has joined other communities such as Naperville, Warrenville, Oakbrook Terrace and Bensenville where police sergeants are unionized, after the state labor board ruled sergeants are not considered supervisors under state statute, officials said.

The other police union in Carol Stream, representing about 50 patrol officers, is currently in negotiations with the village for a new contract. The current agreement expired April 30.

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