The Chicago Tribune has an article about a new contract for Chicago firefighters:

The Chicago firefighters union leadership has reached a tentative agreement with City Hall on a new contract that will reportedly include an 11 percent raise over five years. Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 President Thomas Ryan said the pact will not be officially voted on for several weeks until the two sides hammer out a few more details, “none of which I would call deal breakers.”

But Ald. Nick Sposato, 36th, a member of the firefighters union, said members will get raises totaling 11 percent. Part of the raises will be retroactive to July 2012, when the last contract lapsed.

The contract negotiations did not focus on the additional $600 million payment the city is currently required to make to shore up police and fire pensions, according to Ryan. Mayor Rahm Emanuel hopes to broker a deal that won’t hit the city so hard so soon, but Ryan said that situation will be discussed separately.

Emanuel spokeswoman Sarah Hamilton called the tentative contract a “responsible approach, ensuring our employees are compensated for the critical services they provide our residents and that taxpayers are protected with a fair wage proposal.”

Sposato said the fire contract also would convert 15 basic life support ambulances to advanced life support, a change the mayor supported. The advanced ambulances are staffed by paramedics and have better medication and life-saving equipment. The city will also hire 200 new paramedics to staff the new ambulances by September, Sposato said. “I think this is a good deal for Chicagoans,” he said of the new ambulances.

Ryan said the contract does not change the staffing level on each piece of fire equipment, an idea the mayor floated shortly after taking office that angered firefighters worried about layoffs.

thanks Dan