Trooper Pay Raise Approved Despite State Budget Troubles
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Lawmakers have given state troopers a 20 percent pay raise, estimated to cost more than $20 million a year.
The joint House and Senate budget committee scaled back the salary boost Friday by more than a third from the original proposal because of concerns about the state's financial problems.
The House vote was 24-5, and the Senate vote was 13-3. The committee's chairmen opposed the raise.
Col. Mike Edmonson, superintendent of the Louisiana State Police, said the money was needed to keep trooper pay competitive with other law enforcement salaries.
Opponents questioned if the financing source would be sufficient and said it was inappropriate to give raises when struggling to balance the budget.
Lawmakers described heavy lobbying efforts from troopers and Gov. Bobby Jindal's office for the pay hike.