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Pay Raises for Police, Fire, and Sheriff

Sheriff Dana Lawhorne (Alexandria Sheriff’s Office, City of Alexandria, Virginia) Fire Chief Robert Dube (Fire Department, City of Alexandria, VA) and Chief of Police (Police Department, City of Alexandria, Virginia) Michael Brown. (Photo by Mary Wadland)

City Council Votes YES!

On September 11, the Alexandria City Council voted unanimously to approve pay increases for certain public safety positions. Beginning September 22, police officers’ salaries will increase by 6.22 percent; firefighters and medics by 5 percent; and Sheriff’s Deputy I, Deputy II, Lieutenants and Captains will receive a 5 percent equivalent increase.

“These pay increases will make Alexandria salaries more competitive, compared to our neighboring jurisdictions,” said City Manager Mark Jinks. “It is a top priority for Alexandria, and essential to our quality of life, to retain our excellent public safety employees and to attract new applicants.”

In the public safety arena, there has been and continues to be a high degree of hiring competitiveness among federal, state and local public safety agencies that can lead to difficulties in recruiting and retaining qualified personnel. This national trend is exacerbated in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area due to the sizeable presence of federal law enforcement agencies in the region.

The adopted Fiscal Year 2019 budget included a $3.6 million public safety contingent to pay for the increases. The approved increases were recommended as a result of a 2017 Public Safety Salary Benchmark Study that reviewed the regional competitiveness of public safety pay, and the input of three advisory groups the City created in association with the labor organizations that represent public safety personnel including the Fire and Police departments and the Sheriff’s Office.

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