Clarkston mayor says raise is coming as police push for competitive pay
CLARKSTON, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - The city of Clarkston’s mayor says a raise for police officers is coming in the midst of upset after the topic of competitive pay was overlooked in a City Council meeting.
Tuesday night, police officers and citizens of Clarkston appealed to the city council for competitive pay for police.
“When you find out that our neighboring cities and area are paying $10,000 more than we are, just off the bat, just to start off, it’s really concerning,” said Mark Perkins, who’s lived in Clarkston for ten years.
The Clarkston police chief says a fully staffed force would be 21 officers. The department currently has 15 officers, and the chief believes six could leave by the end of the summer.
“It’s imperative that Clarkston City Council raises our pay. At least to above $50,000,” said Chief Christine Hudson.
When the topic was brought up in Tuesday’s meeting, the city council did not move forward with making it an agenda item.
“I was disappointed by the lack of specific communication around it,” said Perkins.
The mayor of Clarkston says the topic wasn’t fully discussed because salaries are being worked out behind the scenes.
“We as a city looked at the budget, particularly the police department’s budget, and were able to find cost savings that would allow us to do the 8% raise that was requested,” said Mayor Beverly Burks.
The mayor says additional resources are being looked at to use as bonuses.
“We are here to protect our residents and know that we support our police staff and our other staff members,” said the mayor.
The chief wants citizens to know the police will keep protecting them as this is all resolved.
“I want to assure the citizens we will police the city, they will have coverage,” said Chief Hudson.
The next city council meeting is scheduled for July 6.
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