A proposed contract for Joliet police patrol officers provides a new option for contesting discipline along with five years of pay raises.
The Joliet City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday on the contract that would be retroactive to Jan. 1, 2020, when the last contract expired.
The contract provides for pay raises of either 2% or 2.49% through 2024.
It also gives police a new option of having a grievance heard by the city manager for suspensions of five days or more prior to proceeding to arbitration.
City Manager James Capparelli and his predecessor, interim City Manager James Hock, reduced disciplines in several cases that were pending before the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners. Police have the option of appealing suspensions to the board or an arbitrator.
“In the event an employee elects to contest discipline of a five working day suspension or more, the employee may now elect to have the grievance heard at the city manager step prior to proceeding to arbitration,” states the staff report to the council on the contract.
The contract also provides that the police chief file charges with the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners within 90 days of an employee opting to appeal to the board.
The process of filing charges was a repeated issue under previous Chief Al Roechner, although Roechner contended he followed proper procedure while awaiting city legal staff to take cases to the board.
The pay raises provided in the contract are 2.49% in 2020, 2% in 2021, 2% in 2022, 2.49% in 2023, and 2% in 2024.
Source: The Daily Chronicle