St. Louis County Police Department personnel will be getting a raise after the St. Louis County Council approved an ordinance on Tuesday night.
The St. Louis County Council passed the ordinance 6-0, with Councilman Ernie Trakas being absent.
The raise was originally introduced by County Executive Steve Stenger along with the county police union, would raise the income of the county police staff by 30 percent.
The raise would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2018.
Crowd reacts as St. Louis County Council perfects final passage of police pay raise pic.twitter.com/wcARvQy4Kk
— Clayton Times (@ClaytonTimes) October 31, 2017
The police wage increase would come from Proposition P tax with approximately $19 million of the tax money going towards the increase in salary for county police.
Proposition P is a half-cent sales tax that’s expected to generate $80 million a year for public safety. It was passed this April with sixty-three percent of St. Louis County voters voting in favor of the tax.
The ordinance also included a substitution bill that requires 15 percent of the Proposition P money to be set aside for pensions, requested by Councilman Sam Page.
Page said it was a precautionary step to avoid having pension problems in the future.
“Nothing changed my mind, I was always for the bill,” Page said. “But what I insisted on was some sort of lock box to place some of the Proposition P money be saved for the increased liability of pension benefits and until I saw an ordinance I was concerned. I was always for the pay raises and as you can see the council approved them unanimously without much discussion. But I did feel strongly about the pension piece of this as well.”
Joe Patterson, the president of the St. Louis County Police Association, said this new raise was a longtime coming and a challenge worth pursuing.
“This is a huge moment for St. Louis County Police officers,” Patterson said. “A lot of anxiety, a lot of worry and drafting this proposal, getting Proposition P started through the council to be on the ballot and then ultimately working hard to get it out to the voters for passage back in April. It was a tremendous amount of work, but this is truly icing on the cake.”