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  • Taking a Pay Cut

    I have been researching various police departments in my area for the purpose of employment. The departments in my area offer around the same amount per year which is less than what I am currently making. Things are already financially tight and taking a pay cut is almost out of the question.

    Has anyone here taken a pay cut going into law enforcement and how long did it take to get to move up pay wise?

    Any advice is appreciated.

    Thank you in advance for your time.
    “To be a warrior is not a simple matter of wishing to be one. It is rather an endless struggle that will go on to the very last moment of our lives. Nobody is born a warrior, in exactly the same way that nobody is born an average man. We make ourselves into one or the other.”

    Carlos Castaneda 1925-1998

  • #2
    I don't know about your state, but in California most agencies offer a step raise every X months until you reach top step,. Then you get cost of living raises on top of that.

    For example, my agency gives you a 5% raise every 12 months for the first four years. So, four years from the day you started you are making 20% more than your first day on the job. On top of that, every year (depending on our contract) we get a cost of living increase.

    Take a look at the pay scale for the position you are seeking. There should be a list of pay steps. Ask them how long it is between pay steps. With most agencies its six or 12 months. Then ask them how cost of living increases are granted. I suspect you are in a non-union state so it may be at the pleasure of the city or county, but the folks at the agency you are applying with will have a good idea as to the track record regading these increases. Also look for "hidden compensation." Rather than give you an outright salary and look bad to the tax payers, some agencies hide their pay in the form of benefits. My agency gives us 1/2 hour OT per day for a paid lunch (6% raise) plus $130 per month Physical Fitness pay, plus 5% educational pay. So, the money may be there but because its hidden, you don't see it.
    Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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