Sheriff's pay raise already paying off - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Sheriff's pay raise already paying off

September 29, 2006

Reported by Britney Glaser

One of the taxes Calcasieu Parish voters passed in the July election was a half-percent sales tax that would allow for pay raises for the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office, and also provide funding for better equipment.  Even though it is still a couple of days until the tax takes effect, Sheriff Tony Mancuso is already seeing a return on the investment.

Deputies have already met with Sheriff Mancuso to find out how their salaries are going to change on their November paychecks.  Brandi Hudler, a Corrections Deputy with CPSO says, "Everybody's talking about the pay raise.  Everyone can't wait."  They won't have to wait much longer; the half-percent sales tax that was approved in the July election will take effect the first week of October.

Sheriff Mancuso says, "I think that the deputies have some confidence now that they have some stability, and a long-term plan as far as a pay plan."  A pay plan that is going to truly change the lives of employees with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office.  Mike Johnson, a Corrections Officer at CPSO says, "I would have to work as many as 2 jobs to make enough money to take care of my family, and this will help me out considerably and give me some valued time with my family."  Hudler added, "For me, starting back, since I just came back, I'm in the 0-3 range, so it's almost a 50% raise."  This raise will also keep Hudler from working two jobs.  When she worked with the Sheriff's Office five years ago, she also worked shifts at a local plant to make ends meet. 

But, it's not just the staff's paychecks that are going to change.  The raise will finally bring the Sheriff's Office some much needed equipment.  Sheriff Mancuso says, "We didn't ask for toys.  These were not just things we wanted, but, we needed certain equipment to do our jobs and I think that we will be one of the best equipped Sheriff's Offices in the country."  Hudler says the equipment will affect the entire community.  "We'll have more stuff to help us to help the community. Each thing that we get, even if it's a radio system for the jail, if it's anything like that...that makes us more secure in our position to help the community with what they need," says Hudler.

With a secure staff, and a hard-earned raise, deputies say they can see themselves staying in their jobs for the long run.  Johnson says, "Usually, the Sheriff's Office would hire these people and they'd be good people, but they would end up going to another job that paid more.  The Sheriff's Office would be just a step for them." 

The Sheriff's Office plans to see an experienced staff that will create an even safer community.

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