ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – The mood is strained as contract talks continue this week between the city of St. Louis and it’s police officers.

For one, Police Union Business Manager Jeff Roorda says the plan aldermen are working on to ask voters to pass a tax hike to give police an $8 million raise is not enough.

“It takes us one step closer to importing cops and exporting crime, ” he says.

Roorda says that would only give police a $6,000 raise, half what cops in the county are getting. As for the contract talks, police want a promise of bigger raises in writing.

“We’re not going to settle for a handshake agreement. We need the mayor to keep her word, and we need to know that shes going to keep her word,” he says.

Talks continue Thursday. The police, already a hundred officers short, are working without a contract, and many are said to be sending their resumes to other departments. Roorda says an internal survey of officers shows the number planning to leave is much larger than originally thought, but he declined to release specifics.

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