ANDERSON, Texas (KBTX) – Grimes County Commissioners are budgeting significant pay raises for some of their county employees. As the new fiscal year starts, the county is giving merit pay raises across the board for jailers, deputies, dispatchers and constable deputies. Those employees are getting $3 an hour raises, or more than $6,200 a year.
They hope to be able to recruit and retain more employees in these positions since turnover and finding the right people for these positions has posed challenges.
“Dispatch, investigators, jail, patrol is a challenge and I commend the court at this time for doing that. I hope they continue that in the future because it is a challenge, like I said earlier, to retain and recruit people,” said Grimes County Sheriff Don Sowell.
“Well for the employees who are here already it’s a fantastic deal. My hope is that it’s going to aid us in retention because we’ve had a lot of turnover,” said Lt. Davis Use, Grimes County Jail Administrator.
He added employees are excited.
“We are fully staffed in the jail and I’ve got eight dispatchers. I do have two openings,” said Use.
Sowell says they are competing against multiple agencies. He just had a patrolman resign Wednesday morning for a new opportunity.
“I think this is a shot in the arm, if you will morale. Especially today in the anti-law enforcement sentiment around the country and around the state in some areas… And I commend the court at this time for doing that,” said Sowell.
All other county employees are getting a 5 percent cost of living increase.
“If we can compensate them to the best of our ability I feel like we’ve made a step in the right direction this budget year,” said Joe Fauth, Grimes County Judge.
Fauth said the raises for law enforcement will cost the county an additional $380,000.
“They’re in a high risk position. It’s something that they do everyday and most of them don’t do it for the money. They do it out of service to one another and we appreciate that,” he said
The county’s new fiscal year starts Friday. Their tax rate also is staying the same for residents there.
Written by Clay Falls