City of Savannah increases pay for first responders, implements entry programs

Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 10:32 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - The City of Savannah invested in a public safety wage increase over the weekend.

That includes increase in pay, retention bonuses and more.

The pay increase puts the starting salary for police officers at $50,000.

The starting salary for firefighters is at $48,000, up from the previous starting salary $44,000.

The city nearly spent nearly $4.3 million in additional investments for public safety. According to the city, that puts Savannah’s public safety departments in the top 5% in Georgia.

Other ranks at the Savannah Police Department such as officer, corporal, sergeant, and lieutenant also saw a pay raise.

As a supplement to these higher starting salaries, the following have also been implemented:

  • $5,000 new hire sign-on bonus
  • 2-year $5,000 retention incentive
  • $7,500 lateral entry sign-on bonus
  • Lateral entry program for certified candidates to join SPD and be compensated based on years of prior law enforcement experience
  • Referral bonus program to compensate officers for referring new hires hires

For the Savannah Fire Department, the new investments include adjustments to the starting salaries of all advanced firefighters, fire engineers, fire investigators and fire prevention inspectors.

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