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Commissioners approve salary increase for Collier Sheriff's Office

$4 million allocated from reserves into operations for deputies and staff
Posted at 5:22 AM, Jun 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-29 05:22:27-04

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. — On Tuesday morning, the Collier County Board of Commissioners approved allocating $4 million for the county's Sheriff’s Office with a focus on the people who wear the uniform.

That means a pay increase would get fast-tracked before the actual budget approval, in the amended proposal that was presented Tuesday, Sheriff Kevin Rambosk said it’s becoming a struggle to keep deputies with the high cost of housing.

That budget increase was supposed to happen Oct. 1, but in Tuesday's meeting with county commissioners, Sheriff Rambosk says it is necessary to make that pay adjustment now and not three months from now.

William McDaniel, Collier County District 5 Chairman says it wasn't a hard decision by any means.

Joe Trachtenberg, chair of the Collier County Affordable Housing Advisory Committee, noted how this issue now extends even into law enforcement.

"Deputies can’t afford to live in Collier County," said Trachtenberg. "This problem is growing and it certainly isn’t new."

The rising cost of housing in Naples and Collier County has been a topic of conversation all year. A deputy in Collier County is making about $40,000 to $45,000 dollars a year currently, and many renters are seeing those prices keep rising.

"The shock when it gets renewed and his new rent is $3,000 a year, which is absolutely impossible for him to afford at his salary or hers, is a crisis."

McDaniel says as a local government, they have three primary jobs: one, to keep their residents and neighborhoods safe; two, to help their residents; and lastly quality of life.

"Keeping my neighborhood and families safe, making sure I have a well-funded sheriff, this is certainly going to help the sheriff’s department at large," McDaniel said.