Raleigh officials approve raises for police officers, firefighters

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Raleigh officials announced pay increases for first responders and other city employees Tuesday alongside the release of a much-anticipated study on municipal employee pay.

A total of more than 2,000 city employees are expected to see mid-year increases, including firefighters, police officers and others.

A consultant told the City Council that the pay scale for many city employees is too low and needs to be adjusted to attract applicants. The city manager agreed and recommended midyear increases for police and firefighters, among others.

“Looking at our system, it’s overdue, and making changes is the right thing to do,” said City Manager Ruffin Hall.

Among other changes, the starting salary for police officers will increase by more than 13 percent and entry-level firefighters will see a 10 percent bump.

The changes will take effect April 1.

Raleigh City Council unanimously approved the plan at a Tuesday afternoon meeting.

Raleigh firefighter Lt. Chris Ferrell called the move a good one.

“It’s encouraging,” he said. “It’s a good first step. It’s a good-faith effort.”

Ferrell also said that experienced firefighters still need a bigger increase to survive. That’s much the same reaction police officers have, saying that although they are grateful starting salaries increase significantly, the city also needs to help its veteran officers too.

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