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Cole County Sheriff’s Office to increase salary and benefits to reduce staffing shortages


Cole County deputies are getting a pay bump after the Cole County Commission voted unanimously for salary increases this week.

The increase is intended to help keep current, experienced employees and attract the best new hires, officials say.

Sheriff John Wheeler said in Tuesday's commission meeting that the department is down 19 employees.

The new starting salary for P.O.S.T certified deputies will be $50,000 plus benefits and $45,000 plus benefits for detention officers. The sheriff's office is already advertising openings at the new rates.

The previous starting pay for deputies was $48,000, and the previous starting pay for jailers was $42,000.

All uniformed staff members will receive a $2,000 pay increase.

Jailers will receive a $3,000 pay increase.

WATCH: Cole County Commission meeting

Wheeler said the increase will cost the county about $127,370 and the department budget has nearly $266,000 in salary space.

The benefit package includes:

  • Two retirements -- Missouri Local Government Employees Retirement System (LAGERS), and County Employees Retirement Fund (CERT).
  • Employer-paid dental, health and life insurance.
  • 50% employer-paid dependent or spouse health insurance.
  • 12 paid holidays.

"If you want people to stick around, they have to have a good quality of life," Wheeler said in the meeting.

Applications to apply are available on the Cole County website under the job openings tab.

Check back for updates to this developing story.

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Avery Roehler


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