OREGON COUNTY -- Starting last week, sheriff's deputies across the state in rural Missouri started getting a boost in their pay.
Gov. Matt Blunt signed a bill into law, House Bill 2224, creating a Deputy Sheriff Salary Supplementation Fund. The bill was passed by the Missouri Legislature last spring on the final day of its session. Blunt signed the bill into law at the Green County Sheriff's Office in Springfield two weeks ago.
The bill was sponsored by Rep. Kenny Jones of California, Mo.
According to information given by Oregon County Circuit Clerk and Recorder Dorothy Barton, the fund will consist of monies collected from a $10 increase in the fee charged by sheriffs for the service of any summons, writ, subpoena, or other order of the court in civil cases and will be administered by the Missouri Methamphetamine Relief Taskforce within the Department of Public Safety.
This $10 fee increase is the first rate hike for such services in 30 years.
According to the Missouri Sheriff's Association (MSA), the $10 increase in court-related service preformed by deputies should generate $4 to $6 million to distribute to rural counties where the average starting salary for deputies is $22,262.
Oregon County Clerk Gary Hensley said the four main county deputies in Oregon County receive an approximate yearly pay of $21,862.
Green, Jasper and other counties around urban centers of Kansas City, St Louis and Columbia, will become "donor counties" and their deputies will not get pay increases the MSA official said.
"The urban county residents will still benefit from having better paid deputies on the road. People in the city, in the summer come out to the country," Jones, the bill sponsor said at the bill signing.