HomePoliticsJPD raises officially approved by City Council

JPD raises officially approved by City Council

In one of the quickest Jackson City Council meetings in history, the legislative body approved on second reading two budget amendments that were approved on first reading three days earlier.

The first reading happened at their monthly meeting on Sept. 5, but a second special called meeting was set for Friday, Sept. 8.

That was because of the timing for one of the amendments.

The amendment was officially to move $304,826 to the Jackson Police budget to provide for a raise in salaries and benefits for patrol officers and investigators.

The raise was to get the starting salary for JPD from $46,000 to $53,000. The move was to help the department with recruitment and retention because JPD’s pay scale is noticeably behind other departments in cities of similar size.

According to JPD Chief Thom Corley, the struggle is real for the department in maintaining officers and keeping them from going to nearby departments in smaller towns that pay nearly as much as JPD without nearly as much work or danger.

The cost of the raises is a little more than $1 million, and the City already had $745,000 budgeted for raises. The budget amendment on Friday was to pull from the City’s fund balance to offset the difference between the amounts.

The timing of the special called meeting allows the raise to take effect for the next pay period that starts next week.

The Council also approved $29,000 to purchase cameras to place at strategic points around the city to help police illegal dumping.

These cameras will be placed at areas where dumping frequently happens with the hope of catching whomever may be dropping large loads of trash in these areas.

“We can’t prosecute anyone for illegal dumping without hard evidence they were the ones that did it, and these cameras will give us that opportunity,” said City Attorney Lewis Cobb during a city cleanup discussion on Tuesday after the initial City Council meeting.

Brandon Shields, brandon@jacksonpost.news

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