Corrections, police, fire, government employees get raises

To make salaries more competitive and improve retention of quality employees, the Urban County Council today gave Corrections Officers a $7,500 annual raise.

In recent weeks, Council has also increased the pay of Police Officers and Sergeants by $8,000 a year; Police Lieutenants by $5,000 a year; Firefighters, Lieutenants, and Captains by $5,500 a year; and Corrections Lieutenants and Captains by $7,000.

“We are making our public safety salaries more competitive in the jobs market,” Mayor Linda Gorton said. “Like other cities across the country, Lexington has had a problem attracting recruits and retaining officers, especially in Police and Corrections. Keeping our city safe is my top priority, and that means we need quality, well-trained employees. Safety is essential. It is the foundation of our city’s quality of life.”

The increase brings Corrections starting pay to more than $50,000 a year. Corrections also agreed to limited rehiring of part-time corrections employees; allowing supervisory staff to fill overtime slots; and allowing lateral hires from other Corrections facilities to receive starting pay based on experience.

City workers outside of public safety got a 3% raise in January.

The overall cost of the raises is estimated at $17 million a year. The Council set aside $26 million in fund balance this year to absorb a portion of the cost for several years and allow time for revenue to grow.