About the Author
Mark Richardson is a multimedia journalist, editor and writer who has worked in digital, print and broadcast media for three decades. He is a nationally recognized editor and reporter who has covered government, politics and the environment. A journalism graduate from the University of Texas at Austin, he was recently awarded a Foundation for Investigative Journalism grant and has three Associated Press Managing Editors awards for excellence in reporting.
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Sheriff’s groups say deputies need pay raise
Brett Spicer of the Travis County Sheriff’s Law Enforcement Association and James Hodge of the Travis County Sheriff’s Officers Association told Travis County Commissioners Wednesday they need a pay raise for the department’s least experienced officers. They explained how much more the Austin Police Department pays its officers than Travis County does and concluded by asking for a $4 million increase to the budget. However, a member of the county’s budget staff said the overall increase would actually be about $5.7 million for all of the county’s peace officers. County Judge Sam Biscoe said he recognized the need for a pay raise for those officers but it was not clear exactly how much they might get. Also Wednesday, four citizens came to the court to ask that the budget for Sheriff Greg Hamilton receive no increase so long as he continues to participate in the Secure Communities Program with federal immigration authorities. There have been numerous protests by lawyers and rights groups in recent months over the controversial program, which places “immigration holds” on some prisoners after they complete their sentence.
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