Easton City Council voted Wednesday night to approve a new contract with the city's firefighters union.
City officials say the deal is significant because it's the first such agreement reached without arbitration in 20 years.
“It’s really wonderful that we’re not going to arbitration," said Councilwoman Elinor Warner, who praised the city administration and the union for coming to a deal.
“Their leadership really stepped up to the plate…and administration…you all did a great job," added Councilman Jeff Warren, who noted that public unions are realizing how strained local governments have gotten.
According to the contract, the city's 44 firefighters will get a 2 percent raise each year in 2013 and 2014, and a 3 percent raise in 2015 and 2016.
Under the terms of the contract, a the salary for a Recruit I firefighter would be $30,520 in 2013, and would increase to $33,026 by 2016.
The contract is expected to save the city money on health and overtime costs.