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Article updated: 2/25/2013 5:35 PM

Fox River Grove, police union OK new contract

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Fox River Grove and the police union recently agreed on a new contract with pay raises that the police chief hopes slows officer turnover.

The village board last week unanimously approved the deal that expires April 30, 2014. It is retroactive to May 2011.

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"We got to an agreement and I think it works well for both parties," Village Administrator Karl Warwick said Monday.

The deal calls for an average 4.1 percent pay increase across the board, Police Chief Ron Lukasik said. For the first time, eight step increases have been added to the contract for the eight officers in the union so that officers make more money based on seniority.

That had not been the case in the last agreement, as six officers with between four and five years of experience were making the same as newly hired officers, Lukasik said.

Three officers have left Fox River Grove to work for other departments since the last contract expired in April 2011, he said.

Now, a first year officer who made $41,994 in 2011, would make $44,119 the second year of the contract, $46,351 in its third year and $50,906 in its final year.

"The salary adjustments will hopefully help us to retain officers," said Lukasik, adding that Fox River Grove is among the lowest paying departments in the area.

Village President Robert Nunamaker said the process took so long because the police officers switched unions during negotiations, which meant all parties had to start all over again.

The union belongs to Metropolitan Alliance of Police Chapter 663. Union President Eric Waitrovich could not be reached for comment.

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