State workers will begin voting next week on a tentative contract agreement with the Quinn administration.
The deal was hammered out in the early morning hours Thursday… following 15 months of talks that had seemed at times to be hopelessly stalled.
The agreement avoids the possibility of a first-ever walkout by state workers.
Neither side will openly discuss details of the contract proposal, but a bargaining committee member tells the Associated Press that it includes the pay raise that Governor Pat Quinn withheld in 2011… and also includes pay raises in the final two years of the three-year deal.
In exchange, workers would pay more for their health care coverage.
The contract is also believed to address the fate of the free health insurance premiums that many state retirees currently enjoy.