DENVER (CBS4) – Denver police officers began voting Monday on a new contract that will call for them to reap 10 percent in salary increases over the next 3 years; increases one Denver police patrolman called “a gold mine.”
The voting will continue through the week.
Multiple police sources say the new collective bargaining agreement calls for the department’s approximately 1,500 officers to receive a 2.5 percent salary increase in 2015, a 3.5 percent pay raise in 2016, and in 2017, a 2 percent increase in the first 6 months of the year and a 2 percent increase in the last half of the year.
At the end of the 3-year contract, a basic patrolman will be making nearly $86,000 per year. A current Denver patrolman, who asked his name not be used, said he voted for the new collective bargaining agreement but was “astonished” that the city was agreeing to a double digit raise over the course of 3 years.
Police sources also say that the new deal once again awards officers their birthday as a paid holiday, a benefit they lost under the previous 2-year collective bargaining agreement.
CBS4 attempted to contact City Attorney Scott Martinez by phone and email but was not able to obtain an immediate response. Nick Rogers, President of the Denver Police Protective Association, did not respond to a CBS4 inquiry.
“I think it’s going to pass,” said one police officer who also voted in favor of the new deal.
Another official with knowledge of the negotiations between the city and the Denver Police Protective Association described the contract negotiations as “amicable.” That’s a stark contrast to the last contract between the city and the police union which ended up going to arbitration.
The last police contract resulted in a zero percent raise for police in 2013 and a 1 percent raise for 2014, plus officers lost holiday pay for their birthdays, a savings the city estimated at $572,000 per year.
Several Denver officers speculated that the city has more money to pay them thanks to tax revenues from marijuana.