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State House Approves Pay Raises for OHP Troopers
Oklahoma is facing a critical shortage in state troopers.
Oklahoma Highway Patrol is already understaffed, and soon it could lose hundreds more troopers to retirement.
The State House of Representatives is working to remedy the shortage, with a unanimous vote for OHP pay raises. Members hope the high starting salary will encourage more cadets to apply.
The bill would add more than 7-million dollars in raises, boosting cadet pay from about 33-thousand dollars to more than 38 thousand a year.
State Represtenative Jeff Hickman introduced the bill. He says competitive pay will mean the OHP will be able to compete with municipal police departments for candidates. Hickman also says troopers have not received a pay raise in more than six years.
OHP tells us the department is so short-staffed right now one trooper is covering up to three counties at a time.
The proposed bill passed the house with a 90-0 vote. It now moves on to the Senate.
The pay raise does not stop during cadet training.
This bill would also boost pay for troopers completing their probation to more than 44-thousand dollars a year.
Posted: Friday, March 15 2013, 07:29 PM CDT
IN OKLAHOMA NEWS
President Obama to speak on Oklahoma disaster
May 21, 2013 11:02 GMT
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama will be meeting with his disaster response team, including Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, on Tuesday before delivering a statement on the devastating tornado that tore through the Oklahoma City suburbs Monday.
Obama has declared a major disaster in Oklahoma, ordering federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts. The president also spoke Monday with Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin and Rep. Tom Cole, whose home is in the heavily damaged town of Moore.
The White House says Obama told Cole that the American people stand behind Oklahomans as they recover from the disaster.
Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Craig Fugate is heading to Oklahoma on Tuesday to ensure that federal resources are being properly deployed.
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