© 2024 St. Louis Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

New contract gives St. Louis police raises ranging from 8% to 13%

The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Central Patrol Division on Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021, in St. Louis.
Brian Munoz
St. Louis Public Radio
St. Louis police officers and sergeants across the department, including at the headquarters of Central Patrol in the JeffVanderLou neighborhood, will receive raises ranging from 8% to 13% under a new contract.

Officers with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department are getting one of their largest raises in nearly three decades.

Unions representing patrol officers and sergeants voted overwhelmingly to endorse the two-year deal. It guarantees one-time raises ranging from 8% to 13%, depending on how long an officer has been with the department. Because of pay parity provisions, firefighters will also receive a raise. The exact cost of the raises, and the funding source, was not immediately available.

Officials with the St. Louis Police Officers Association called the deal a “meaningful step in the right direction” toward closing pay gaps with other departments, especially St. Louis County's. They said it will help with recruitment and retention.

The contract includes little language around operational items like promotions or discipline. Union officials said that coming to a deal on those matters would have been difficult and that economic issues were more important.

Officers had been working without a contract since April 2021, when talks between the city and the union broke down. The union later filed suit. A previous deal had technically expired in 2020, though language allowed for it to remain in place until a new one was reached.

In a statement Friday, Mayor Tishaura Jones said the contract with the police unions was one of several the city was negotiating “around wages and antiquated language in an effort to improve competitiveness, operations, and accountability in our departments.”

“This agreement will help the city be more competitive in hiring and retention,” the statement said.

The contract also includes language that the deal remains in effect only if the city retains control of the department. A bill that would place the SLMPD back under control of a state-appointed board received initial approval in the Missouri House earlier this week.

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.