The next step in the conciliation, or mediation process for the compensation of Police officers is this Wednesday December 21, when the Fraternal Order of Police Labor council and representatives from the City of Sioux Falls will try to come to payment terms that are agreeable to both sides.

Tom Wilka represents just over 200 Officers and Sergeants with the City of Sioux Falls Police department. He says any progress made in the negotiations is voluntary.  Wilka says the concern over asking for a certain amount in pay and benefits is attracting the right people for the job.

The key focus throughout all of the negotiations by the FOP has been the recruitment and retention of officers.  That recruitment and retention is of course impacted by the current state of affairs which face Police Officers everywhere including here in Sioux Falls.

The lack of resolution for an officer’s pay can affect morale.

When you have a high pressure job like you do in law enforcement, and you see only an offer of only a 1.5% wage increase, that is discouraging to people and morale has an impact on the ability of the department to retain experienced officers.

When the City of Sioux Falls presented their “Best and Final” offer to the FOP, nearly 95% of FOP members voted against accepting the contract.

Until an agreement is reached, the FOP says City Police will continue to deliver services to the citizens of Sioux Falls.

Negotiations do not affect positions of Lieutenants, Captains or Police Chief.

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