Excerpts from the Journal-Topics.com:

A new contract between Des Plaines and the International Association of Fire Fighters includes changes to employee benefits and 2.75% wage increases every year for four years.

Annual 2.75% wage increases beginning retroactively for 2017 and ending in 2021 for 85 fire department employees are included in the new contract. While that figure is slightly higher than the average 1.92% wage increase for unions in Des Plaines this year, it is equal to the average wage increases in the city by 2020.

For non-officer firefighter/engineers in Des Plaines, the base 2017 annual salary will be $66,960 at just under 50 hours of work per week in the Step 1 employment position, determined by years worked in the department. By 2018, the annual salary for the same level employee at the same amount of hours will be $68,823, according to a chart included in the contract. By 2020, annual salaries for lieutenants and captains will be over $121,000 and $127,000, respectively.

Salaries also increase by $1,000, $1,500 and $2,000 after 10, 15 and 20 years with the department, respectively.

In concession for the increased salaries, the union agreed to eliminate some Preferred Provider Organization and Home Medical Insurance medical plan options. Additionally, optical insurance rates will be offered at the non-union price starting next year. Des Plaines will still offer dental insurance to fire department employees in the new contract.

The agreement contains clarified language regarding retiree health savings, which had been the source of conflict in the previous contract.

Aldermen approved the new agreement Sept. 5.

thanks Dan