Village Board finalizes 2nd police dept. contract

By on February 17, 2012

To vote on agreement at Feb. 21 Elburn Board meeting
by Susan O’Neill
ELBURN—The contract between the village of Elburn and the Elburn Police Department will be on the agenda for the Village Board meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 21, but at least one trustee will be voting no.

“I appreciate everything the Police Department does, but I will be voting against this,” trustee Ken Anderson said. “This board made a good decision a couple of years ago when we gave them (the police officers) a substantial pay increase. I was hoping we could all be team players, but that didn’t happen.”

After the meeting, Anderson elaborated on his feelings.

“With the current economic situation, pay raises should not be part of the discussion,” he said. “Other things will have to get cut.”

This is the second contract negotiated between the Police Department and the village, with the first one beginning in August 2010 and running through October 2011. Trustee Anderson said that around that time, the village conducted a survey of salaries of police departments of similar size in the area, and increased the Elburn Police Department salaries based on the results. Police officers then received a 3 percent increase in 2011.

In addition, the village’s portion of the payment into the police pension fund doubles this year, due to the village reaching a threshold population of 5,000 residents. Previously, police pensions were paid out through the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF), but when the village population went over 5,000 residents after the 2010 census, an Illinois law went into effect, requiring the pensions to be paid under the downstate pension system.

According to Village President Dave Anderson, the village’s previous contribution was 11 percent of the salaries; beginning this year, it will be 22 percent. Each individual police employee’s share was 4.5 percent; beginning this year, the share will double to 9.2 percent of an individual’s salary.

In future years, the additional payments will even out; however, this year the village must place $162,000 into the police pension fund. Although required by law to do this, the village does not have funds set aside to cover this cost, so residents in Elburn will be asked during the March election to approve a new property tax levy to pay for the additional amount. If approved, the new tax would be a separate line item on property tax bills.

Highlights of Elburn Police Department contract

• Contract covers Elburn full-time police officers and sergeants from Nov. 1, 2011, through April 30, 2015

• Officers must live within 40 miles of the police facility

• Paid days off:
12 paid holidays
3 paid personal leave days
12 paid sick days (unused sick days
may be rolled over from year to
year up to a maximum of
160 days; paid out at state
minimum wage upon retirement)
May donate up to three sick days to
a co-worker in need

• Earned paid vacation:
(unused vacation days are paid back at the end of the calendar year)
– 0-4 years 10 days/year
– 5-8 years 15 days/year
– 9 years 20 days/year

• Those with at least 10 days vacation may sell back five days to the village at their current rate of pay

• Pay increases:
No raise for this year
1 percent raise for 2013
3 percent raise for 2014
1 percent shall be added to the base
pay of all bargaining unit members
completing 12 years of service

• Each bargaining unit member
employed as of Jan. 1, 2012, will receive a one-time $750 contract signing bonus on May 1, 2013.