Sheriff’s deparment settles union contracts

St. Joseph County Sheriff’s Department recently settled union contracts with its employees.

The agreement means a few modifications to contracts the department has for patrol services in Centreville, Burr Oak and Fabius Township.

Sheriff Mark Lillywhite told commissioners last week the three-year contracts, which started this calendar year, will reflect an annual increase in rates for coverage.

The agreement with Centreville will cost the village $166,000 this year, an increase of about $14,000 from the 2021 rate, Lillywhite said. It will pay about $175,000 in 2023 and $183,000 in the final year of the contract. Centreville relies on two shifts of patrol.

Rates for coverage in Burr Oak and Fabius Township are $83,000 in 2022, $87,000 next year and rise to nearly $92,000 in 2024. Both entities have one shift of patrol.

The increases are attributed to annual raises for deputies. In all three contracts, the deputy’s rate is $40 per hour this year, $42 an hour in 2023 and $44 an hour in the final year of the contract.

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