GARDNER, Kan. — Officers with the Gardner Police Department could soon be in line for a raise. Monday the Gardner City Council will review a plan to increase salaries for city police officers.
The Gardner Police Department’s current starting wage is $22.11 and is scheduled to go up to $22.77 in 2023. According to city documents, the department has lost six officers in the last few months and is currently the second lowest paying law enforcement department in the county.
The council is considering a step pay plan similar to what was approved for Johnson County Sheriff’s Deputies in September. If approved the plan would bump starting wage up to $28.50 for first year officers. From there the salary structure would be based on an individual’s rank and years of service. Newly hired officers will start on the second step of the pay scale. Officers would also be eligible for cost of living pay adjustments starting in 2024.
Under the proposed plan, officers would see an annual pay increase of roughly four percent. Officers currently earning less than $28.50 per hour will be moved to Step 2 or a higher based on experience.
In an effort to attract more applicants, the city will also consider approving a $2,000 bonus for new hires that pass the recruitment process and field training.
The proposed plan is estimated to cost the city $425,000 in fiscal year 2023. The Gardner City Council is scheduled to review the proposed pay scale adjustment during the next regular council meeting on Monday, Nov. 21.