Stay in Taos

The Taos News - - LO­CAL NEWS -

Tru­jillo’s of­fi­cers start at $18.85 per hour and are bumped to $19.85 the mo­ment they grad­u­ate from the New Mex­ico Po­lice Train­ing Academy. While this hourly rate is a com­pet­i­tive salary for Taos, in the po­lice realm, Taos is be­hind some of the other agen­cies in the area. New hires to the Taos County Sher­iff’s Of­fice are also be­hind sev­eral in the state with new re­cruits start­ing at $15.85 and mov­ing up to $17.85 once they grad­u­ate the academy.

Of­fi­cers in Al­bu­querque re­cently re­ceived a mas­sive in­crease in their com­pen­sa­tion in April, bring­ing the hourly rate for lat­eral hires at APD to

$28 per hour, the high­est paid agency in the state. Lat­eral of­fi­cers are those who are hired on from other agen­cies and have a one-year pro­ba­tion pe­riod after which they are raised to

$29 per hour.

Re­cruits be­gin at an of­fi­cer sec­ond class and for one year are paid at $20.85 per hour, ac­cord­ing to APD’s web­site. APD’s raise puts them higher than Los Alamos, one of the higher paid agen­cies in the area, ac­cord­ing to Tru­jillo.

“I be­lieve we are in a good sit­u­a­tion in terms of re­cruit­ment,” said Los Alamos Po­lice Chief Dino Sgam­bel­lone. “We gen­er­ally get a lot of ap­pli­cants when we open po­si­tions. Cer­tainly, I think pay is part of that, but there are other fac­tors that fall into play.”

Los Alamos pay ranges for their new of­fi­cers start at

$23.98 and in­crease with ex­pe­ri­ence and ed­u­ca­tion. Ex­pe­ri­enced lat­eral of­fi­cers can make over $26.43 per hour de­pend­ing on their qual­i­fi­ca­tions.

APD’s raise has been at­trac­tive to of­fi­cers in the metro area as well as some across the state who have been leav­ing to work in New Mex­ico’s big­gest city.

“It’s def­i­nitely not get­ting any safer to live here,” said Lt. Trace Peck, Uni­ver­sity of New Mex­ico Po­lice pub­lic in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cer.

Ac­cord­ing to Peck, the UNM Po­lice force is mostly com­prised of for­mer APD of­fi­cers who were look­ing at the de­part­ment’s tempt­ing raise as a rea­son to go back.

“We were prob­a­bly the low­est paid in the state,” Peck said.

In or­der to re­tain their of­fi­cers, UNM gave their po­lice de­part­ment a 13 per­cent raise. Of­fi­cers at UNM now be­gin at $23.41 per hour. Be­fore the hourly rates were in­creased, Peck said of­fi­cials in the de­part­ment took a wage hike propo­si­tion to uni­ver­sity of­fi­cials and boards, say­ing it was cru­cial to raise of­fi­cer pay to keep the cam­pus safe.

Peck said the raise was pos­si­bly the first in­crease he had seen in his nine years at the de­part­ment.

Other out­lets have also tried to stay com­pet­i­tive with APD’s re­cent raise, in­clud­ing Santa Fe, which has been los­ing of­fi­cers to higher pay­ing out­lets. Santa Fe Po­lice were re­cently given a sign­ing bonus for new of­fi­cers who ei­ther sign up first time with the de­part­ment or trans­fer from an­other. New re­cruits are given a $1,000 bonus and trans­fers get a $3,000 bonus.

“It’s the domino ef­fect,” Tru­jillo said. “You have one agency

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.