Senate confident of pay raises for Florida Corrections Officers
Committe chair says they'll find money to give prison guards pay increases
TALLAHASSEE (by Alan Spector/FLA. NEWS NETWORK) -- The chairman of the Appropriations Committee in the Florida Senate says they'll find the money to give prison guards a pay raise this year.
That was welcome news for Corrections Secretary Julie Jones, who says she can't hire people fast enough to replace the officers who leave for better-paying jobs.
"We have streamlined and increased hiring; in fact, we're a hiring machine," she said. "We hire thousands of new corrections officers and correctional probation officers every year. The problem is, I can't keep them. In many cases, I can't compete with local business and government to even hire them."
Jones says it's gotten so bad that she's lost officers to Wal-Mart.
Jones says she wants an across the board raise for guards and probation officers, extra pay for working with inmates who have mental health problems, and a hiring bonus for officers who transfer to prisons that are severely understaffed.