Posted by Rachel Leigh - email
WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX) - Local police, upset over a pay freeze and decreased benefits, were planning to protest over pay. But, they may be ready to negotiate.
A new survey of salaries, however, reveals that West Palm Beach Police are among the highest paid in the state.
That survey found that West Palm officers are the second highest paid in the state. The survey ranks 17 police and sheriff's departments of similar size.
City officials have confirmed that West Palm Beach officers make an average base salary of about $67,000, and, with overtime, officers average more than $82,000.
Officials with the Palm Beach Police Benevolent Association say they believe the survey by the Florida League of Cities is a bit skewed, and that there are several other agencies in the county that make more than they do.
Union officials add they don't believe they're being unreasonable, and they just want to get their message out.
"The reality is, we're looking at a $20-million budget deficit for next year, so we're asking every department to tighten their belts, and the police are certainly included in that," said city official Peter Robbins.
There are West Palm Beach Police officers that will be working SunFest, along with private security, as well.
Mayor Lois Frankel released this statement Friday morning. "I will continue to seek a resolution that reflects the tough economic times faced by our taxpayers and one that does not compromise public safety."