Northwest suburban residents can rest a little easier.
A 911 dispatchers strike was averted early Thursday thanks to a tentative deal reached after more than two years of negotiations. A strike could have begun as early as 5 p.m.
A board member from the Metropolitan Alliance of Police confirmed to the Daily Herald the deal was made just before 1:30 a.m. on all but seven noneconomic issues. Those issues more than likely will be hammered out by an arbitrator.
Talks lasted nearly 12 hours to discuss a contract involving dispatchers represented by MAP Chapter 540.
Dispatchers' salaries range from about $44,000 to $66,000 per year. Workers answer calls for Arlington Heights, Palatine, Buffalo Grove, Elk Grove Village, Schaumburg and others, making a potential strike disastrous for those communities.
The tentative agreement must be ratified by union members and the dispatch board, according to board members. It could take a few weeks.