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Gov. Ricketts, Corrections Officer Union Agree to New Pay Plan

Media Contacts:  

Taylor Gage, 402-471-1970

Eric Maher, 402-471-1974

 

Media Release:

Gov. Ricketts, Corrections Officer Union Agree to New Pay Plan

 

LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts issued a statement after the State of Nebraska and the Fraternal Order of Police, the union representing Corrections Officers at the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) and Safety and Security Specialists at the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), reached agreement on a new pay plan.

“This new agreement shows how much we value the teammates working in our state prisons and DHHS facilities,” said Governor Ricketts.  “The plan builds on the great work Director Frakes and his team have been doing to reduce turnover and build the team we need to keep people safe.”

In January the administration announced that annual staff turnover at NDCS had declined for the first time since 2010.

“Our protective services staff make great sacrifices to help keep our prisons secure and protect public safety,” said Director Scott Frakes.  “This new merit system recognizes their experience and performance they bring to the jobs to help make our team successful every day.”

The new agreement includes three components:

  • Merit Raises: Corrections Officers at the state’s prisons will have the opportunity to receive merit bonuses once a teammate reaches different steps in their years of service. 
    • New Officers: New corrections officers will receive 2.5% merit increases for hitting certain career milestones, including 1, 3, 5, 7, and 10 years of satisfactory performance. 
    • Current Officers: In July, current teammates will benefit from the higher wage based on their years of service.  For example, a teammate with 10 years of service will receive a 12.5% increase. 
  • 12-Hour Shifts: Right now, state prisons are run using 8-hour shifts.  The State will get the discretion to implement 12-hour shifts at high-security men’s facilities on up to 50% of posts.  This will help create a safer environment for Corrections Officers and reduce overtime.
  • CIR Decision: The State committed to implementing the recent Commission on Industrial Relations (CIR) ruling with respect to pay adjustments for all classifications. 

This new agreement follows a decision by the CIR that generally held wages for NDCS officers flat after finding that Nebraska pays corrections officers better than peer states.  The CIR ruling did increase pay levels for Safety and Security Specialists within DHHS.  Those increases are incorporated into this agreement.

Over the past four years, Governor Ricketts and NDCS Director Scott Frakes have worked to reduce Correction Officer turnover.  More background about previous initiatives can be found by clicking here