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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sheriff Gualtieri plans raises for staff

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office is planning to give employees a roughly 3 percent raise next year, the first wage increase for the agency's staff in at least five years.

The starting salary for a sheriff's deputy has held steady for years at $41,000, Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said, but that low entry wage is beginning to hurt the agency. Hit with an unusually high attrition rate this year, the agency is struggling to fill positions and is discovering that some of the most desirable applicants are being lured away by higher-paying law enforcement agencies.

In Hillsborough County, starting deputies can make $44,335, according to the agency's website. In Tampa, a beginning police officer can earn a minimum of $46,384, and in Clearwater, $44,471 is the base pay for a police officer.

"We're way behind," said Gualtieri, who is considering raises in the range of 3 to 3.5 percent. (That would not affect his salary, which is set by the state.) Full story here.

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 15, 2013 1:36pm]


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