The deal still has to be approved by the Kane County Board, but the court security-guard strike that once seemed imminent now appears to be settled—at least for awhile.
The Kane County Sheriff's Office announced Tuesday that the Policeman's Benevolent Labor Committee has agreed to a new five-year deal.
"The topic of a potential strike by Kane County Court security officers has gotten media attention over the past few months," Lt. Pat Gengler said in a Tuesday e-mail that included a statement from Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez.
On March 8, the PBLC voted 21 to 7 in favor of the latest proposal, which had been "suggested by the union's legal advisors," the statement said.
"Terms of the proposal aren't being released at this time as the terms of the proposal have only been discussed with members of the County Board Labor Management Committee and not the full board," Perez said.
Ironically, the two groups could be back at the bargaining table soon, because the five-year deal is retroactive to Dec. 1, 2008, according to an article in the Daily Herald. Security guards have been working for that long without a contract.
The County Board is expected to consider the tentative agreement in executive session Tuesday and could vote as soon as April 9.
A strike had seemed imminent since late February, when the PBLC rejected the "last, best" offer of Kane County put forward by Perez and the negotiating team.
There are 32 security officers in the union, and the guards handle security at the Kane County Judicial Center, the Geneva courthouse, the St. Charles Branch Court on Randall Road and other branch courts in Elgin, Aurora and Carpentersville,
Attorney Tim O'Neil, who represents the union, told the Daily Herald that starting salaries for security personnel are in the $25,000 range and pay tops out at $34,000.