With the adoption and passage of funding for the new career pathway for officers, agents, and supervisory personnel, FOP has been busy collecting data to substantiate whether the information used by the outside consultant is accurate. FOP was the ONLY employee organization that asked for a GRAMA request to disclose the material used by the outside consultant. Below is the data used by the consultant to determine placement on the new salary schedule.
FOP will be meeting with the Cook Administration on May 11th to present the findings of a FOP committee of Agents and AP&P Supervisors. Come back here to get updates.
Below are the GRAMA files used to develop the salary plan by Kenning Consultant.
Murray • Gov. Gary Herbert released his proposed $16.1 billion budget Wednesday, a plan that urges extra investment in law enforcement and education.
It includes no tax increases. But the governor projects about $287 million in new annual revenue that the state could "strategically invest" because of an improving economy that generates more tax collections as people earn and buy more.
"It invests in people, particularly our young people in education," Herbert said of the budget.
Herbert unveiled his proposals at the Salt Lake area Utah Highway Patrol headquarters in Murray — instead of at a public school as he has in recent years — to underscore a need to catch up with what he says is some long-overdue spending for public safety.
That includes $7.6 million more to improve salaries for correctional officers at state prisons — including creating a career ladder for them — to address problems with high turnover from low pay.
More than 60 percent of the state's correctional officers now have five years or less of service — and 27 percent of them have only one year of service. Turnover among officers was 20 percent in 2015.
"Most of the public safety agencies have a career ladder in place, where their staff every year gets an incremental increase. We don't have that," said Rollin Cook, executive director of the Department of Corrections. "This career ladder makes us competitive with everyone else."
FOP is VERY active on Capitol Hill fighting for improved wages and benefits for all sworn. We have cleared a major hurdle this week when the subcommittee approved for the second year in a row funding for correctional salaries. Below is an overview of what was achieved and what still needs to be done. We can only accomplish our objective if you act! See below what we need you to do please.
FOP wishes to thank President Vaugh Howard for ensuring that this is the FOP’s top priority, Ken Strong and Holly Neville who been the driving force in FOP's efforts to improve compensation. Kudos also go out to Director Cook and Deputy Director Mike Haddon, who been tireless in their efforts to achieve greater compensation for sworns.
THREE IMPORTANT COMPENSATION FUNDING POINTS FOR SWORN OFFICERS:
Hope my post clears up what took place on Friday. What we need to DO NOW, is write respectful emails to the Executive Appropriation Committee asking EAC to approve the prioritization of the subcommittee. Stay tune for names of members and email addresses.
WHAT WE NEED TO DO NOW!
Write respectful letters or emails to the Executive Appropriation Committee (EAC) asking them to keep the funding in place for correctional salaries. Share with Legislators the challenges of mandatory overtime, time away from your family, and the stress of your job - in a respectful way. Stress the need for a livable wage to support your family. PLEASE BE RESPECTFUL!
MEMBERS OF THE EXECUTIVE APPROPRIATION COMMITTEE
Simply go to the link below, click the name of the legislator, click their email address, and write your letter. It is just that simple! Please DO IT NOW, it will make all the difference.
YOUR STATE LEGISLATOR
Also, write your legislator in a respectful letter asking him/her to go to the Chairs of the EAC and the Chairs of the Executive Offices and Criminal Justice Appropriation Subcommittee requesting they support the Correctional Salary Compensation proposed allocation as recommended by the subcommittee. Go to the link below to find out who is your legislator if you do NOT know who it is. DO IT NOW, it will make all the difference.
Make you letter personal. Legislators get thousands of emails and hundreds of letters. If you want them to stand up and take notice, personalize your emails or letters.
by Kelly Atkinson, Executive Director FOP Lodge 14
Recently an employee association circulated an email to employees of the Department of Corrections taking credit for Governor Herbert budget proposal to appropriate $4.2 million for salary adjustments in the Department Of Corrections - 2.1 million dollars for positions under “market comparability” and another $2.1 million to be spent at the discretion of the UDC Administration for compensation issues. This proposed adjustment is in addition to the 1.25% proposed COLA adjustment for state employees. Additional funding was docketed to pay for the increases associated with health insurance costs and retirement contribution rate increases needed to keep the retirement system actuarially sound. FOP could scarcely believe what was being circulated by the employee association in their email. Really guys!
Here are the facts and the people who deserve the real credit for the Governor’s proposal:
If anyone deserves credit for the $4.2 million proposed appropriation in the Governor’s FY 2015 budget it is Ken Strong, Holly Neville, Director Cook, and Governor Herbert.
The immediate task at hand is to secure the funding proposed by Governor Herbert in the upcoming 2015 Legislative Session. FOP will be working with Lt. Strong, Ms. Neville, the Administration of the Department of Corrections, and other employee groups to accomplish this objected.
It serves no one, in FOP opinion, to take credit where none is deserved. It is divisive, unproductive, and defeats the purpose of working together to achieve our common objective of higher compensation for the underpaid officers and agents that work for the Department of Corrections.
For over a year now FOP is been working with the administration and advocates like Ken Strong and Holly Neville to get officers salary more in line with this three's highest counties. By Utah state law, the legislature is supposed to compensate officers equivalent to the three highest counties - Salt Lake County, Davis, and Utah County. The law states specifically:
To allow the state to recruit and retain the highest qualified law enforcement officers, correctional officers, and public safety dispatchers, the pay plans for law enforcement officers, as defined under Section 53-13-103, correctional officers, as defined under Section 53-13-104, and public safety dispatchers, as defined under Section 53-6-102, employed by the state shall comply with Section 67-19-12, except that the market comparability of state salary ranges for these positions shall be based on a survey of salary ranges of respectively:
(1) the three largest political subdivision law enforcement agencies in Utah;
(2) the three largest political subdivision entities employing correctional officers in Utah; and
(3) the three largest special service district or other political subdivision entities in Utah employing public safety dispatchers in a similar consolidated operation.
Amended by Chapter 140, 2007 General Session
To go directily to the statute, just click the button below:
On July 2, 2014, at the Fred house Academy, Director Roland Cook chaired an UDC Staff Compensation Committee Meeting. This historical meeting was called in order for employee groups to have an open discussion with the Director about compensation. Director Cook indicated he would like to work the various employee groups to ensure the wages in the Department of Correction are fair and equitable. The UDC Staff Compensation Committee will work over the next several months in order to present a wage proposal for the consideration of the Governor and the Utah State Legislature. Vaughn Howard, President of FOP, stated, “It is impressive to have a Director who is willing to discussion openly what constitutes fair and equitable compensation. It’s just one more reminder of the positive changes that are occurring in the Department of Corrections.”
BACKGROUND & HISTORY
FOP is always been at the forefront of pursuing greater salaries and more equitable benefits. FOP in Corrections was founded on fighting for more equity and fairness. Representative Perry Buckner back in the 90s carried legislation for FOP that resulted in the first salary increases in the Department in a number of years. It was FOP who formed C.U.R.E. (Cops United for Retirement Equity) and secured the 4% COLA for retirees – a benefit that firefighters enjoyed for years and years. When Director Patterson came on board, FOP push for a fairer salary system for the members of the Department of Corrections. This lobbying eventually led to what is now known as a career ladder. Why FOP did not author the career ladder (the Patterson Administration did), the principles of consistency and fairness espoused in the pay plan are basic tenants, in FOP’s judgment, to sound pay principal. “Let’s not forget”, said Kelly Atkinson, FOP Lodge 14 Executive Director, “On the old pay plan, salary steps were not automatic, and no one ever got to the top of the salary schedule. The old plan had absolutely guarantees. “
CAPTAIN KEN STRONG, CAPTAIN KENT DEMILL,
AND CORRECTIONAL SPECIALISTS HOLLY NEVILLE
Recently, Captain Ken Strong, Captain Kent Demill, and Correctional Specialist Holly Neville developed a proposal which was discussed on July 2, 2014 during the UDC Staff Compensation Meeting. The proposed new pay plan was developed based on research the three employees gathered. Section 67 – 19 – 12.3 of Utah State Statute states::To allow the state to recruit and retain the highest qualified law enforcement officers, correctional officers, and public safety dispatchers, the pay plan for law enforcement… shall be based on a survey of salary ranges of the three largest political subdivision law enforcement agencies Utah employing correctional officers.” These three officers are suggesting a total revamping of the current career ladder pay system. The pay plan would provide step increases each year for 24 years. Advancement from one step to another would be automatic. COLA adjustment, fund being available, would be applied on the salary schedule annually. The ranges in the pay plan mirrors the compensation being received by the three largest political subdivisions employing correctional officers.
Kelly Atkinson, Executive Director of Lodge 14 FOP, states, “Captain Strong, Captain Demill, and Correctional Specialist Holly Neville, have developed a strong argument for the adoption of a more equitable pay plan in the Department of Corrections. FOP plans on putting its full weight behind the adoption of this plan which more effectively reflects fair and equitable compensation for the men and women work for the corrections. Every officer (APP & PO) working for corrections owes Captain Strong , Captain Demill, and Correctional Specialist Neville a debt of gratitude.”
As FOP pursues our efforts, we will continue to inform our members of our progress.