Charleston Co. Sheriff seeks $2 million to increase pay rates and help fill vacancies

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NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) — The Charleston County Sheriff is asking the county council for millions of dollars to help make the department’s pay rates more competitive.

Charleston County Sheriff Kristin Graziano said there were just over 100 vacancies at the detention center and 44 vacancies for deputies.

The starting salary for people working in the detention center is the lowest in the Tricounty, where deputies earn just over $36,500 to start.

She also said some MPs have to answer calls on their own and the department cannot continue to operate with the way they have become strained.

Graziano asked county council on Thursday evening for about $2 million to raise a deputy’s pay rate from just under $40,000 to over $47,000 and just over $41,000 for deputies in detention.

She also said the starting pay rate at the sheriff’s office has not been increased since 2017.

“We are unable to grow or advance in the agency until we fill these vacancies, so the vacancies are going to have an effect on the service if we don’t do something now,” Graziano said. . “It’s like trying to put a bandage on a hemorrhage, and it doesn’t work that way. We have to do it now.

Graziano hopes the department gets the money to raise salaries in January.

She said they were prepared to make changes to their budget to increase salaries if necessary.

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