ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC)- Understaffed and overworked, the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) is offering new incentives for its officers.
Sergeant Cliff Griffin says finding willing officers to work for little pay in a stressful environment is a very difficult task.
“It’s hard trying to find qualified people that one: want the job, and are willing to come in and work when they could sit at home and make more sometimes collecting unemployment,” Sergeant Griffin said.
However, Sheriff Ricky Bishop has been working diligently with the Taylor County Commissioner’s Court to raise salaries and provide incentives to keep and acquire officers.
The first incentive is double pay for any overtime worked, which can see new officers making close to $35 an hour.
Secondly, the Commissioner’s Court voted to remove the 86 hour overtime cap. Officers can now start making that double pay after accruing 80 hours and keep making it after working 86 hours in a pay period.
Currently short 35 officers, understaffing has been the catalyst for these incentives.
TCSO had to send 100 male inmates from the Taylor County Jail to Burnet County Jail in order to maintain the proper officer-to-inmate ratios to keep both parties safe.
A ratio that would normally sit around 1 officer per 48 inmates now sits around 1 officer per 60 inmates.
Sheriff Bishop says he hopes the added incentives will attract more officers to the area and keep the ones who have been working so diligently during the last few months.