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  • Pay Difference Between States

    I've been wondering why states in the south have a much lower base pay than states such as New York and other northeastern states?

  • #2
    Cost of living. I really have nothing else to add.

    Comment


    • #3
      My guess would be a generally lower cost of living and a smaller tax base.

      Comment


      • #4
        Prevalence of unions in the Union might help explain the difference, too. Union workers of any ilk tend to make more than their unorganized brethren.

        Prevalence of larger cities. Larger cities typically pay more, so the more officers you have working on big departments, the more your percentages are skewed.
        I miss you, Dave.
        http://www.odmp.org/officer/20669-of...david-s.-moore

        Comment


        • #5
          OK I'm gonna jump into this debate here and throw my .02 cents in. Being that I am originally from New Jersey and worked there as a policeman and now am in South Carolina as a Sheriff's Deputy I think I have some first hand knowledge.

          The original question was why do southeastern police/sheriff departments pay less than in the north east. Well the answer to that question is multi-faceted and I'll try to explain my thoughts on the subject. First and foremost when it comes to the amount of pay the major factor IMO are the unions. The Northeast has them and the South does not. It's almost universally accepted that unionized labor will be paid more than non-unionized labor. While cost of living in the South IS much lower the amount we get paid down here still does not equal out in the long run.

          Now there are ups and downs to unionized labor and the big salaries in the NE and it is in this area that I somewhat need to agree with JB, but I will add caveats to his theory.

          As to the standards required to be hired in both the NE and the SE they are quite similar on paper. Yes in both places you need to have a clean criminal history, good driving record, clean background, good credit, satisfactory job history etc. Some depts both in the NE and SE require college degrees or experience and some likewise do not. No difference there. Now the problem we run into in the NE is because the pay is so high there is a much higher competition for LE jobs. Some say this is good as it attracts better qualified candidates into LE, I'm not so sure about that though.

          It has been my experience that the higher pay in the NE has done just the opposite. It has turned the position of a police officer into an attractive spot for those who really don't want to be a cop so much as have a secure job with a big check. I have worked with many officers that were there only for the paycheck and to do as little as possible. They did not enhance their departments and due to the unions, which got them the high pay, they had job security as long as they made it past probation.

          The second part about getting hired in the NE is getting through the political and "who do you know" disaster. JB is quite right in that it can take years to get hired in the NE. It took me just about 3 years to finally land a job, 1.5 of which was after I had put myself through the academy. I applied to well over 20 departments and went through quite a few processes. Let me tell you how disheartening it is to place in the top portion of the written, physical and oral boards only to watch people get hired who have an "in" with the town or department. It got to the point where you would see the same people over and over at each new job opening all with stories of who they had seen get hired with little or no qualifications.

          The third part about getting hired in the NE, specifically in New Jersey, is the way departments are set up and application procedures. Unlike in the SE where most states have large Sheriff Offices that patrol most of the county and a few city and town departments here and there, the NE has thousands of smaller police departments that police each little town individually. This leads to smaller departments who then become much more likely to hire people who they know for the few openings they have. Also nearly half of police departments in NJ are civil service which have to be applied to through a state test given only every 2 years. On top of that in order to qualify to be interviewed for most of those departments you have to set up residence PRIOR to taking the test. Once you take the test you are locked into your residence and cannot move to another township to try and apply to their department. In fact if you DO move not only are you not eligible for the town you moved to, but you lose your eligibility for the town you originally lived in!

          In the SE most police and sheriff's departments welcome applicants who live out of town, county, or even state. The Sheriff's Office I was hired at, I applied to when I was stationed in Georgia with the Army and there was no problem with that. They were professional about the hiring process, keeping me in the loop at all times about what was going on. I was informed that I passed every phase in a timely manner and after submitting my application in June of this year I was hired by October. I go in tomorrow for agency training and then off to a 3 week lateral academy before I go back on the road. All and all I am more impressed with the professionalism and quality of this department than my last one. Even though I would have ended up making twice as much at my former dept. than this one I think the fact that I work in a better environment with people who want to be here will be why I plan on staying in the SE.

          Comment


          • #6
            WTPD...you sort of confirmed my intuition regarding the political atmosphere in the NE. Because of so many smaller departments in states such as NJ, MA, and/or NY, it would seem that the "small-town" politics would be huge. That would be one of the most frustrating things to deal with if you had an excellent background and could not get hired simply because you did not know anyone. As I stated in my earlier post, the concept is alive in TN as well, but not near as bad with LE as it is with the FDs. Thanks for your insight in the subject. I would like to hear from more of those who have worked in LE in the north & south.
            I'm 10-8 like a shark in a sea of crime..

            Comment


            • #7
              Well, as a Texan, I have to say that it's probably because they HAVE to pay more. You'd have to pay me a whole lot to leave the great state of Texas, and I can't see why people want to live up there in the Yankee states.





              And yes, this was tongue-in-cheek, for those who are offended.
              If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

              ---Jack Handey

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by WTPD3534 View Post
                OK I'm gonna jump into this debate here and throw my .02 cents in. Being that I am originally from New Jersey and worked there as a policeman and now am in South Carolina as a Sheriff's Deputy I think I have some first hand knowledge.

                The original question was why do southeastern police/sheriff departments pay less than in the north east. Well the answer to that question is multi-faceted and I'll try to explain my thoughts on the subject. First and foremost when it comes to the amount of pay the major factor IMO are the unions. The Northeast has them and the South does not. It's almost universally accepted that unionized labor will be paid more than non-unionized labor. While cost of living in the South IS much lower the amount we get paid down here still does not equal out in the long run.

                Now there are ups and downs to unionized labor and the big salaries in the NE and it is in this area that I somewhat need to agree with JB, but I will add caveats to his theory.

                As to the standards required to be hired in both the NE and the SE they are quite similar on paper. Yes in both places you need to have a clean criminal history, good driving record, clean background, good credit, satisfactory job history etc. Some depts both in the NE and SE require college degrees or experience and some likewise do not. No difference there. Now the problem we run into in the NE is because the pay is so high there is a much higher competition for LE jobs. Some say this is good as it attracts better qualified candidates into LE, I'm not so sure about that though.

                It has been my experience that the higher pay in the NE has done just the opposite. It has turned the position of a police officer into an attractive spot for those who really don't want to be a cop so much as have a secure job with a big check. I have worked with many officers that were there only for the paycheck and to do as little as possible. They did not enhance their departments and due to the unions, which got them the high pay, they had job security as long as they made it past probation.

                The second part about getting hired in the NE is getting through the political and "who do you know" disaster. JB is quite right in that it can take years to get hired in the NE. It took me just about 3 years to finally land a job, 1.5 of which was after I had put myself through the academy. I applied to well over 20 departments and went through quite a few processes. Let me tell you how disheartening it is to place in the top portion of the written, physical and oral boards only to watch people get hired who have an "in" with the town or department. It got to the point where you would see the same people over and over at each new job opening all with stories of who they had seen get hired with little or no qualifications.

                The third part about getting hired in the NE, specifically in New Jersey, is the way departments are set up and application procedures. Unlike in the SE where most states have large Sheriff Offices that patrol most of the county and a few city and town departments here and there, the NE has thousands of smaller police departments that police each little town individually. This leads to smaller departments who then become much more likely to hire people who they know for the few openings they have. Also nearly half of police departments in NJ are civil service which have to be applied to through a state test given only every 2 years. On top of that in order to qualify to be interviewed for most of those departments you have to set up residence PRIOR to taking the test. Once you take the test you are locked into your residence and cannot move to another township to try and apply to their department. In fact if you DO move not only are you not eligible for the town you moved to, but you lose your eligibility for the town you originally lived in!

                In the SE most police and sheriff's departments welcome applicants who live out of town, county, or even state. The Sheriff's Office I was hired at, I applied to when I was stationed in Georgia with the Army and there was no problem with that. They were professional about the hiring process, keeping me in the loop at all times about what was going on. I was informed that I passed every phase in a timely manner and after submitting my application in June of this year I was hired by October. I go in tomorrow for agency training and then off to a 3 week lateral academy before I go back on the road. All and all I am more impressed with the professionalism and quality of this department than my last one. Even though I would have ended up making twice as much at my former dept. than this one I think the fact that I work in a better environment with people who want to be here will be why I plan on staying in the SE.
                what ya said is true...........
                when i did the chicago stuff, a cop told me when i was 21, i'd have gray hair
                before being hired due to things happening inthe labor market...
                \so after my furlough/ lay-off from rail_roading, here i am with over
                25 yrs in as of sept 16th, and can walk away anytime i want.
                " if you talk in your sleep, don't mention my name....
                " if you walk in your sleep, forget where you came....

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by pilot56 View Post
                  I've been wondering why states in the south have a much lower base pay than states such as New York and other northeastern states?
                  Because clearly police officers in southern states aren't as good and don't do nearly the same amount of police work




                  only kidding
                  "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." -Edmund Burke

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    NYPD out of the academy 46,288 and this figure includes all kinds of stuff shift pay and all that j***

                    APD out of the academy 50,848 this figure is what you can make day 1 on a day shift with no shift dif.

                    Oh wait a sec Austin is in the south and we make more than the NYPD and Ft Worth and Dallas are doing there best to keep up.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Yeah, I make 30,000 a year. But I have a 3 bed, 2 bath brick house on a corner lot with a two car garage for $570/month... find that in the Northeast. Also, how's that State Income Tax working out for y'all?
                      sigpic
                      Let your watchword be duty, and know no other talisman of success than labor. Let honor be your guiding star in your dealing with your superiors, with your fellows, with all. Be as true to a trust reposed as the needle to the pole. Stand by the right even to the sacrifice of life itself, and learn that death is preferable to dishonor. ~ Gov. Richard Coke, October 4, 1876

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I'd rather pay my old state income tax (which was nothing) than the property tax here in Texas.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by jb5722
                          NYPD might just be the lowest paid department in the entire northeast, not a very good example. the part you forgot to mention, is that same NYPD officer would be making over $90,000 a year 5 years after they started, what would that austin pd officer be making?
                          I can't imagine that $90,000 is very good money in New York. I remember reading that the average price of a home in New York City is around $1 million. Do NYPD officers have to live within the city?
                          "The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, can not and will not ever harm the sheep." -Lt. Col. Dave Grossman

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by School Cop View Post
                            Well, as a Texan, I have to say that it's probably because they HAVE to pay more. You'd have to pay me a whole lot to leave the great state of Texas, and I can't see why people want to live up there in the Yankee states.





                            And yes, this was tongue-in-cheek, for those who are offended.
                            I know how you feel. I'm from the Western New York Area and to be honest with you, I would never want to live in Texas. I probably wouldn't want to move out of state.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              A million for the average house is a just a bit inflated. Expensive yes, a million, no.
                              Being a good street cop is like coming to work in a wet suit and peeing in your pants. It's a nice warm feeling, but you're the only one who knows anything has happened.

                              Comment

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