Lawmaker wants to boost police and firefighters' paychecks

GEORGETOWN, Ky. (WKYT) - A Georgetown representative is hoping to tackle stagnant salaries for some first responders when the Kentucky legislature returns this week.

State representative Phillip Pratt, who represents the 62nd district, which includes Georgetown, is a co-sponsor of House Bill 60, which would boost paychecks for police and firefighters.

"This bill should be a slam dunk," said Pratt. "I think it should very easily pass."

The proposal hopes to grow and solidify bonuses for police officers, and both paid and volunteer firefighters across the Commonwealth.

For union representative and veteran firefighter Chris Bartley, it comes down to the issue of increased demands, and no raise of this kind since the early 2000s.

"It's not a huge amount, but it is enough to make some sort of difference," said Bartley. "We've also increased our roles and responsibilities in protecting the public."

The bill has been assigned to the Appropriations and Revenue Committee when the Kentucky legislature returns on February 7th.
If passed, the bill would become law immediately after the governor signs it.

"I think they have always been underpaid, and to a point, under appreciated for what they do every day, and this is money that should have been given to them a long time ago," said Pratt.

Pratt says the bonuses will be paid for by an already existing surcharge on casualty insurance policies.

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