About 1,000 LAPD officers to receive salary increases

Police departments across the country have been criticized during the last year after a string of high-profile officer killings of unarmed black men.

 

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LAPD officers hired over the past five years were approved salary raises by the Los Angeles City Council. (Thinkstock)

About 1,000 LAPD officers who were hired over the past five years will receive salary increases under a legal settlement approved by the Los Angeles City Council today.

The affected officers joined the Los Angeles Police Department after the city reduced starting salaries by about 20 percent during a budget crunch.

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The City Council voted 13-0 to approve the settlement that was announced Tuesday by Mayor Eric Garcetti, who said the pay increase would “equalize the pay of those officers” by restoring their salaries to match those of peers hired prior to the salary cuts.

Future hires would also get the higher starting salary — about a 20 percent increase, according to an attorney for the police officers’ union, the Los Angeles Police Protective League.

The news came amid ongoing labor contract negotiations between city and union officials.

The agreement will settle a lawsuit in which a police officer and the union contended the city posted an “incorrect salary” for new hires on its website, according to Stephen Silver, the union’s attorney.

“These people relied upon that to their detriment, foregoing other opportunities, assuming they were going to get the higher pay,” Silver said.

The agreement will go into effect Sept. 7, boosting the lowest starting pay for an incoming officer from about $49,000 to $57,000, according to Silver.

The increased starting salary was one of the terms included in a tentative labor deal that was reached earlier this year between the city and the LAPPL, but was ultimately rejected by the union’s members.

LAPPL President Tyler Izen said Tuesday the union is “pleased that after several years we were able to settle our 20 percent salary differential litigation.” He said the agreement will “stop the exodus of officers who were leaving the LAPD to join other Southern California law enforcement agencies” due to the “significant” pay gap.