The Hamilton Board of Selectmen approved a new four-year contract for town police officers at their Monday night meeting.
Town Manager Michael Lombardo said the contract is retroactive to 2009, including two years police union members worked without a current contract, and extends through 2012.
Lombardo said the contract excludes educational benefits under the Quinn Bill, instead writing education bonuses into the current pay structure.
Police Chief Russell Stevens said the Quinn Bill, passed in the 1970s, was intended to "professionalize" police forces by paying patrolmen to pursue higher education.
Most police officers coming onto the force today have completed a college degree, Stevens said.
Other amendments to the contract include a stipend of $1,500 for maintaining an EMT license. Previously, police were paid overtime to take EMT training.
Lombardo also bargained a reduction in vacation time for new police hires, he said.
Lombardo said the contract was negotiated without arbitration or mediation.
"It's a balanced contract," Lombardo said.
Selectman David Carey said it seemed like a "very fair and reasonable result."
Lombardo said he is recommending that the town rescind Quinn Bill payments by a vote at Special Town Meeting this weekend, since the incentives are now part of the contract.
Paying police officers' education incentives through the town contract rather than a state reimbursement is "cost neutral," Lombardo said.
However, the new structure "gives us long-term cost management," Lombardo said.
The contract was approved by a unanimous vote of the Selectmen.