CONYERS — The Conyers City Council is aggressively working to hire police officers, last week voting to increase the starting salary for entry level officers by 10%. New police officers will also receive a $3,000 signing bonus.
The council approved a new pay scale setting the starting salary for police officers at $46,788, outpacing starting salaries for surrounding jurisdictions and exceeding even the Cobb County and Dunwoody Police departments. The new salary scale takes effect Jan. 1, 2022. The city’s previous starting salary for a police officer was $42,500.
“We are seeking out the best people that want to be Conyers Police officers and 911 operators, and those that contribute to the public service ethos that we have as an agency,” said Deputy Chief Scott Freeman. “Our mayor and City Council stand firmly behind the men and women in uniform, and this new pay increase sends a strong signal of their support and desire to hire and retain the best of the best. The new salary will put the CPD in a position to attract the best possible candidates for the Police Department that will help fill the nine vacancies that we currently have for police officer.”
The city also increased the minimum starting salary for 911 operators from $33,040 to $34,913. The city currently has three vacant positions in that department.
In addition to the increase in starting salary, Conyers Police officers are offered a slate of benefits, including take-home vehicles; 12-hour shifts with every other weekend off; a wellness program; gym reimbursement; paid leave; medical, dental and vision insurance; 100% employer paid retirement plan; a free membership to the city-owned Cherokee Run Golf Club; paid dues to the Fraternal Order of Police; tuition reimbursement through the Fraternal Order of Police and more. Incentives are offered for higher education, as well, ranging from 5% for an associate’s degree to 15% for a master’s degree.
Freeman said the city looked at other area police departments’ starting salaries before moving to increase compensation. In comparison, the Rockdale Sheriff’s Office pays $40,497; Newton Sheriff’s Office pays, $42,240; Henry County Police pays $43,435 and Covington Police pays $42,350.
While increasing starting pay for police officers, the city also incorporated the police pay scale with the city’s overall employee pay scale and increased the minimum starting wage for all city employees from $11.80 to $14.50 per hour.
“As you know, we have a very hard time finding people to work overall, not just in the Police Department but in all departments,” Finance Director Isabel Rogers told the council.
Mayor Vince Evans noted that it is important for the city to remain competitive in order to hire qualified employees.