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Lawmaker seeks better pay for state correctional officers

Delaware Public Media

A Republican State Senator is offering a plan to hire more correctional officers and make starting their salaries more competitive.  

The move comes after an inmate uprising at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center this month that left one correctional officer dead.

Sen. Dave Lawson’s (R-Marydel) proposal would hire an additional 180 officers and boost starting salaries to $37,000. It would also give everyone at the DOC a $4,000 raise.  

“This plan will allow our prisons to be properly staffed by men and women who are paid a competitive salary,” said Lawson, a retired Delaware State Police officer, in a statement.

The pay raises and new hires are expected to cost the state around $15 million.

Lawson wants to use $22 million set aside for overtime to pay for his plan. His proposal would use the additional $7 million for additional overtime.