AUSTIN (KXAN) — The Austin Emergency Medical Services Association (AEMSA) has voted to approve a new labor agreement with the City of Austin. The agreement will be voted on by Austin City Council on Thursday.

According to Selena Xie, president of AEMSA, members voted 93% in favor of the contract with a majority (65%) of its members voting.

“What I think that the vote really indicates to me is that one, people really want to stay in contract, because they recognize that that is the best thing for the community,” Xie said. She also said the process highlighted a need for better retirement options in Austin, but that those issues largely have to be worked out at the state level.

“The City and AEMSA grew to understand and appreciate their respective priorities over the negotiation process, eventually coming to an agreement that focuses on retention that both believe will begin to address long-standing critical staffing shortages,” the city said in a statement before the union vote.

In the agreement, all current employees would get a 4% or more pay increase based on position and tenure within the department.

The city said the entry-level medic salary was increased to $24.24 an hour to assist with recruitment.

“To help retain the most experienced employees, additional increases were added at year 23 and year 26, providing the most tenured employees with increases of 9% – 14.5% in year one of the contract,” the city said in a statement.

You can read more about the details of the contract in KXAN’s previous report.