11/21/2012 07:59 EST | Updated 01/21/2013 05:12 EST

BC Hydro reaches tentative contract with modest wage hikes for 2,000 workers

VICTORIA - BC Hydro has reached a tentative contract with a union representing 2,000 workers in jobs ranging from administration to maintenance of the electrical grid.

The two year agreement with the Canadian Office and Professional Employees Union includes wage increases of four per cent spread over the term of the deal, which runs until March, 2014.

The union says there are also some modest benefit improvements and it withstood the government's attempts to win concessions on benefits.

The government says the wage hikes will be paid for by savings found within existing budgets, meaning taxpayers won't face any additional costs.

The union is recommending ratification of the deal, and a vote will be held by mail-in ballot in the coming weeks.