Erby introduces legislation that would give Corrections Medicine employees a sizable raise

After months of public forum at the St. Louis County Council meetings some St. Louis County employees may finally have their sought out pay raise through Proposition P funds.

Councilwoman Hazel Erby on Tuesday introduced legislation that would use Prop P funds to give Corrections Medicine and certain employees at the St. Louis County Department of Justice Services a 10 percent raise.

Councilmember Erby

This comes after months of public comment from various St. Louis County Corrections Medicine employees stating that they believe they were considered public safety employees that were deserving of Proposition P funds.

Kerah Braxton, an accountant at St. Louis County Justice Services, said at Tuesday’s meeting that she and all other Justice Services employees appreciated all of the effort that Erby and the rest of the council made towards the proposed raise.

“We the 55 would like to express our sincere appreciation and gratitude for Councilwoman Erby taking the charge of writing and sponsoring this bill for us,” Braxton said. “Though this has been a tedious process you have never wavered in your resolve and you stayed with us the entire time. Often offering us needed encouragement along the way.”

Proposition P is a half-cent sales tax that’s expected to generate $80 million a year for public safety. It was passed in April of 2017 with sixty-three percent of St. Louis County voters voting in favor of the tax.

Erby also introduced an ordinance that would transfer $295,657 from the unappropriated balance of the general fund to the health fund. This is needed in order to pay for the salaries of the employees assigned to and working in the Corrections Medicine program.

In February County Executive Steve Stenger proposed that the sum of $150,000 be appropriated to support a program for a three percent raise for employees assigned to and working in the Corrections Medicine Program of the Division of Health Services in the Department of Public Health.

The money for the increased wages would come from the county’s health fund.

Councilwoman Hazel Erby at the time stated that she thought the amount was an ‘insult’ and the money for the raises shouldn’t come from the health fund. Corrections Medicine employees also balked at the idea of only a three percent raise.

Erby’s legislation was introduced on Tuesday, and it still has a ways to go before it becomes enacted. The next step is for the bill to be perfected meaning any amendments can be added, then the following week it can be at its final passage stage.

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