Madison County sheriff seeks raises for corrections officers - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Madison County sheriff seeks raises for corrections officers

Madison County Sheriff Blake Dorning (Source: WAFF) Madison County Sheriff Blake Dorning (Source: WAFF)

Madison County Sheriff Blake Dorning is asking the county for pay increases in his department.

Dorning brought the matter before the county commission on Wednesday, asking for $300,000 for county corrections officers.

These corrections officers currently make between $27,000 and $34,000 per year. Dorning's request calls for their salaries to be comparable to their counterparts in other major Alabama counties like Jefferson and Mobile.

Dorning also said there are too many job vacancies because of the high turnover among their corrections officers. He said current salaries aren’t high enough to compensate working conditions these officers endure, such as threats and hostility from inmates.

"So how do you attract employees to come and work in those type of conditions making that type of a salary?” said Dorning.

Some commissioner said they want to look at other ways to solve these problems besides with pay raises.

"It appears that we have to make some more downsizing in Madison County so that we can address these issues that have been brought up,” said Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong.

Commissioner Bob Harrison said the issues are more discretionary rather than budgetary. He indicated a high number of inmates with mental issues as such an issue.

"We want our dollars to be more efficient in what they do, not only in the capital sense, but in the sense of humanity,” Harrison said.

"You've got to continue to look at the budget, find out how you make it work,” said Strong.

The commission will start making budget considerations this month.

Dorning said a pay adjustment would be appreciated but admits the jail will have to figure out how to run regardless of the commissioners’ decision.

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