Kudos to Missouri for giving state workers a raise

Saturday, March 19, 2022

We want to join the Jefferson City News Tribune and others in commending the Missouri Legislature and Gov. Mike Parson for approval of a supplemental budget that will give state workers a 5.5% cost of living raise and ensure they make a minimum of $15 an hour.

The bill also accounts for wage compression for those employees already making above $15 an hour, as the Tribune and other outlets have reported. Other sections of the bill appropriate funds for education and the state’s Medicaid program.

The state, like many of us, has felt the crunch of vacant jobs it can’t fill. As of Jan. 10, about 4,500 jobs were unfilled and open in state government.

The state is also juggling a lot of retraining of workers when the folks it hires don’t stay long, which further complicates the situation.

And when we don’t have properly trained, or enough, people to provide badly needed state services, it hurts all of us.

“Missouri pays its government workers less than just about every other state. Ultimately, that’s costing our state more to constantly hire and retrain employees. Meanwhile, the state can’t provide Missourians with the level of service they expect, such as keeping state-maintained roads cleared of snow during winter,” the Tribune shared recently.

“We are happy to sign the supplemental budget bill into law,” Parson said in a statement. “This bill not only gives our dedicated state team members a long-overdue pay increase, but also appropriates critical funding to our K-12 schools and child care system. We thank the General Assembly for working to get this important piece of legislation passed and to my desk.”

Thank you to the governor and the state for addressing this issue.

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