FOP Letter to the Editor

May 9, 2019

The Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge #7 for St. Mary’s County submitted the following letter to the editor:

Dear Commissioners of St. Mary’s County,

The Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge #7 for St. Mary’s County is writing you this letter to address the issue of the pay disparity between our agency, the Maryland State Police, the Prince George’s County Police Department and the Charles County Sheriff’s Office. In the coming years, the MSP, PGPD and CCSO are slated to receive significant raises, which will drastically increase the already established pay disparity of 4.5-6.25% that was discovered during the pay study of 2018. In comparison, the current 2020 budget shows that the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office will only receive a 4% raise over the next three years.

It is the concern of the FOP Board, as well as the FOP’s 200 members and their families, the majority of whom reside in St. Mary’s County, that the pay disparity will negatively impact the SMCSO. Currently, the SMCSO for the first time in several years is on the cusp of being fully staffed. If our pay does not remain competitive with the surrounding jurisdictions, the FOP fears that the SMCSO we will lose exceptional officers to the higher paying agencies that surround us. This has been proven to be the case in past years with the loss of 26 Deputies and Correctional Officers (who transitioned to police) primarily due to salary. This is according to these employees’ exit interviews. In essence, the SMCSO and the taxpayers of St. Mary’s County will be responsible for paying to send new officers through the costly and vigorous training only to see them leave after realizing a nearby jurisdiction is paying more for the same requirements. In summary, the SMCSO will be unable to attract, recruit and retain officers if our pay is not competitive.

The FOP and its members understand the difficult job you, the Commissioners, have in effectively allocating money. It is our hope with the increase tax budget in 2020 that the pay for the men and woman of the SMCSO will reflect the hard work that they do, as well as the dedication they have to provide safety to the citizens of St. Mary’s County.

The FOP Board of Directors

8 Responses to FOP Letter to the Editor

  1. Anonymous on May 9, 2019 at 8:54 am

    It’s a fact – the Deputies and Corrections Officers will leave for more pay, just like people in all other professions do. Shall St Mary’s continue to pay for training only to see the employees leave for better pay or will St Mary’s increase the pay rates to be comparable to retain the employees?

    • Anonymous on May 11, 2019 at 11:30 am

      Is there hazard pay for those areas or is it really factored in via raises only?

    • dontworryboutit on May 14, 2019 at 4:20 pm

      “real pay for real police work.” my dad was on the SWAT team in St. Mary’s, are you implying that’s not “real” police work? I get what you’re saying but the subtext that the SO here isn’t doing “real” police work is just false. Officers here risk their lives just like officers in high call areas.

  2. The REAL Truth on May 10, 2019 at 8:01 am

    “Currently, the SMCSO for the first time in several years is on the cusp of being fully staffed.”

    Yet for some reason they still cannot dedicate resources to conducting traffic enforcement on a regular basis as shown by the half dozen accidents each and every day in a county with around 130K residents!

    BTW… publicly announcing that 235 is too scary to patrol during rush hour is not a good tactic to use when you want to justify getting paid more…

    • Rick James on May 11, 2019 at 12:25 pm

      Because they are not fully staffed, don’t fall for that BS.

  3. Anonymous on May 10, 2019 at 10:14 pm

    to the absent minded one who calls him/herself “The REAL”. Do you actually live under a rock? The officers do their best to patrol the streets of St. Mary’s County as well as respond to other calls for service. This isn’t the first time you’ve made this comment. There is more to being a police officer than just patrolling route 235. accidents are caused primarily by driver’s not paying attention and making an error which causes the collision. If you don’t like the way people drive on Route 235, STAY OFF OF IT. I think the readers would appreciate the day when you actually say nothing. You are as stupid as they come.

    Good luck officers and stay safe. Hope the commissioners pass it as they should.

    • The REAL Truth on May 12, 2019 at 4:08 pm

      Hahahaha…. typical SOMD mouth breather! When there is a problem.. you just attack the people who want to get it fixed because that is easier than actually fixing it! You need to read your comment and think about how idiotic it is. You say that accidents are “caused primarily by driver’s not paying attention and making an error” which could be greatly improved by a higher police presence enforcing traffic laws but I guess they are “doing their best” huh? Looks like their best isn’t good enough! How many more people have to be injured or die around here before something is done smart guy? You might be happy with “doing their best” but most people want results! Drugs and car wrecks have been 2 of the worst problems in this county for 15 years and neither have been addressed properly. But, you just keep them county boys running the show and I’m sure it will never be you or your loved ones that get T-boned some day!

  4. Anonymous on May 11, 2019 at 4:44 pm

    How does the criminal justice system, with its job security, relate to suspects that have no job security, or maybe don’t even have a job? Relate, because its certainly something they don’t experience. Maybe the criminal justice system is not supposed to relate to suspects.