Mayor Mitch Landrieu.
With a projected revenue forecast to bring in an addition $14.6 million to the city, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu
announced this afternoon two police pay raises to kick in this summer.
Landrieu proposed raises for officers of all rank within the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD), the first of which begins with a 5 percent raise July 1, followed by another 5 percent raise on Jan. 1, 2016. These raises follow a 5 percent raise in the 2015 city budget, creating a 15 percent overall pay raise for 2015 and into 2016. The announcement follows the NOPD's aggressive hiring campaign and wavering morale and retention issues within the department. According to the city, the raises are intended to address officer retention and recruitment.
How did the city land an additional $15 million? According to the city, the revenue projection comes from "continued cuts and reorganization in City government and a very strong third and fourth quarter sales tax growth that showed the impact of the Outlet Collection at Riverwalk, the two additional Walmarts and numerous other new and expanded retailers."
Late last year, as the New Orleans City Council approved the city budget with a 5 percent pay raise, the Police Association of New Orleans and the Fraternal Order of Police pressed for a bigger raise
, as it wasn't significant enough to address attrition in the ranks.
The FOP's Donovan Livaccari told Gambit
that today's announcement is a "step in the right direction."
"It sends a clear message to officers to continue service, and it sends a message to potential police offers that you should come work for the police department," he said. "It's a more tangible raise for officers and something they'll actually be able to see after the taxes and so forth, something that will make a real impact in the lives of these officers."