Oklahoma state troopers get first pay raise in 7 years

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As the new year begins, state troopers here in Oklahoma are about to have a little more money in their pockets.

Starting January 1, the highway patrol saw it's first across the board pay hike for the first time in a long time.

In fact it has been 7 years since the starting salary at the agency has gotten a boost

For the last 7 years the starting salary at the Highway Patrol has been just over $33,000.00.

In 2014 the state legislature agreed it was time for a change, bumping up the starting pay to nearly $41,000/00.

Prior to the pay hike, the Highway Patrol ranked 25th for compensation among all law enforcement agencies in the state, trailing behind some much smaller departments.

"You know a guy or girl could work at smaller agencies and make just as much or more," said Oklahoma State Trooper Capt. Paul Timmons.

Captain Timmons says that fact definitely hurt the ability to recruit people to become troopers and retain much of their workforce.

"We lose a lot of people because of what the starting pay was opposed to what it is now," said Timmons. "The pay raise will help retain those considering a career change."

The pay raise will cost the state several million dollars, but some say it's a small price to pay to keep the best troopers possible on the streets.

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