A Look at Pay Parity in State Patrol and Conservation Agencies

This research puts pay and contextual data gleaned from state conservation and state patrol agencies in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Missouri, and West Virginia into the context of an anonymous survey of conservation rangers from across the country. Facts about pay, including the number of rangers, starting pay, and pay for experienced rangers is viewed through the lens of responses from 372 rangers in 17 states across the United States. The findings demonstrate that, at least in the states surveyed, state patrol officers generally make higher wages than conservation rangers, a fact not lost on rangers who responded to the survey. Nearly 98% of respondents believe that troopers make more money than rangers; about 86% attribute the difference in pay to politics. Understanding the facts about parity in pay as well as staff perceptions of inequity is important for state agencies attempting to recruit and retain qualified staff.

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