Edmonson lobbying for state police pay raise - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Edmonson lobbying for state police pay raise

State police proposed raise  (Source: WAFB) State police proposed raise (Source: WAFB)
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - State Police Col. Mike Edmonson says the time is now to get his team paid.

"It is definitely now the right time to do this and that's why I'm going before the session on Friday. What we're asking for is an even playing field. We're asking to bring those numbers up and equal to what the others are paid," Edmonson said. 

State Police are moving to become the highest paid law enforcement agency in Louisiana.

According to a 2013 LSU study, at entry level, ten other police agencies in Louisiana are paid better than State Police. But a 30 percent pay increase starting next week for more than 1,600 troopers would bump starting salaries with benefits from roughly $35,000 to over $46,000, making State Police number one. Curerntly, the Gonzales Police department has that top spot.

State Police pay is 42nd out 50 states nationally and the fifth lowest paid out of the Southern states. Mississippi is lower and Texas and Arkansas are higher.

"As I travel around the state of Louisiana and I ask them what's most important to them, they tell me to feel safe," said Col. Edmonson.

Col. Edmonson says public safety should be the state's top priority, but the state treasurer says he has bigger concerns.

Looming in next year's budget, a $300 million cut to higher education.

"We're already last in education. We're not going to catch up by gutting our universities. Our universities are already $700 million down since 2008," says John Kennedy, state treasurer.

Kennedy says new cuts would hit every college and university across the state even harder.

"Our state troopers put their lives on the line everyday. Do they need more money, sure, absolutely. But I will tell you, I make no bones about it, my first priority is higher education," said Kennedy.

Analysts say lawmakers will have to weigh public safety against a strained state economy being hit hard by low gas prices.

"It could be a tough sell, but if anything can override the budget constraints it's the fact that we have a state with a high crime rate. And state troopers, as far as their abilities and their compensation, that's something I think that most people can understand. We want good law enforcement to protect us," said Jim Engster, 9News Political Analyst.

State Police say a pay raise will not come from taxpayer dollars.

About $14.6 million was raised internally. Legislators are voting Friday to decide whether or not to move that amount into an account to pay for salaries.

Copyright WAFB 2015. All Rights Reserved.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • College student arrested; tried to trade chicken alfredo, Sprite for sex

    College student arrested; tried to trade chicken alfredo, Sprite for sex

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 3:38 PM EST2017-12-13 20:38:04 GMT

    Youngstown State University student Albert Maruna was caught red-handed and arrested this week after he allegedly attempted to have sex with a 15-year-old boy, who turned out to be an undercover officer.  

    More >>

    Youngstown State University student Albert Maruna was caught red-handed and arrested this week after he allegedly attempted to have sex with a 15-year-old boy, who turned out to be an undercover officer.  

    More >>
  • Roy Moore responds after Senate loss to Doug Jones

    Roy Moore responds after Senate loss to Doug Jones

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 10:58 PM EST2017-12-14 03:58:33 GMT
    (Source: Moore campaign)(Source: Moore campaign)

    Roy Moore has released a statement following his loss to Senator-elect Doug Jones in Tuesday's election.  Moore released a video to the people of Alabama. The transcript is below: Tomorrow, my wife and I will celebrate our 32nd wedding anniversary. I want to thank her and all my family, for standing with me through this long and arduous campaign. And of course, I want to thank all of you who have stood with me in this very important battle for the future of our country. We ...

    More >>

    Roy Moore has released a statement following his loss to Senator-elect Doug Jones in Tuesday's election.  Moore released a video to the people of Alabama. The transcript is below: Tomorrow, my wife and I will celebrate our 32nd wedding anniversary. I want to thank her and all my family, for standing with me through this long and arduous campaign. And of course, I want to thank all of you who have stood with me in this very important battle for the future of our country. We ...

    More >>
  • Dan Johnson: KY State Rep. kills himself in Bullitt County

    Dan Johnson: KY State Rep. kills himself in Bullitt County

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 11:29 PM EST2017-12-14 04:29:43 GMT

    Kentucky state representative "Pope" Dan Johnson has committed suicide, days after a report surfaced alleging he assaulted a teenage girl in 2013.

    More >>

    Kentucky state representative "Pope" Dan Johnson has committed suicide, days after a report surfaced alleging he assaulted a teenage girl in 2013.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly