Members of the Kern County sheriff’s Command Staff Association voted to accept a pay raise Thursday offered by county leaders who say it will make top brass and rank-and-file deputies the highest paid law enforcement in Kern County. The union represents 36 high-ranked members within KCSO, including chief deputies, commanders, lieutenants, and DA lieutenants.
“I believe it is a fair contract,” said Adam Plugge, treasurer with the union. “Each one of our members will receive a raise of some sort, it will not be a substantial raise, but it is a fair contract at the moment.”
County officials said the new contract will result in a 3 to 10 percent raise for for the members. Previous benefits including the 10 percent Kern Flex percent addition and four percent fitness pay addition will be rolled over to the base salary, per KCSCSA president Kevin Wright.
Under the new terms, an entry level lieutenant will jump from roughly $100,603 to $106,656, a 6.5 percent increase. The new figure is roughly $1,000 more than the $105,054 salary paid to the same level BPD lieutenant.
While the command staff union has signed on, a vote by hundreds of sheriff’s deputies hangs in the balance; The Kern Law Enforcement Association union (KLEA), the union that represents hundreds of KCSO sergeants and below, continues to negotiate with county officials.
Meantime, Plugge says he and his members are now looking toward the future.
“I believe this is a good step moving forward,” he said, noting, “everything has been stagnant for so many years, so I think it is a step in the right direction for our union and membership.”
The Board of Supervisors still needs to approve the deal, and will take it up for a vote on August 13.