APD to lose some stipend pay starting Thursday
Matthew Paredes works on the frontlines of justice as a patrol officer.
“We get to help people right away. We have the best chance of helping them, right after it happens,” said Paredes, senior patrol officer.
In addition to his salary, the single father of two earns stipends for being bilingual, field training, working the night shift and assisting the mentally ill...that's all in addition to his patrol duties.
“Boss sent us an email saying we were going to lose it soon, I was like oh no I didn't know that,” said Paredes.
APD has not had a contract since December, but council voted to reinstate some lost stipends for three more months. Now that deadline has arrived. For Matt it will be hundreds of dollars in loss in monthly income that has helped the family.
“My daughter is going on a mission trip to Puerto Rico this summer. It's expensive. I don't want to tell her no. She's trying to do a good thing, she wants to volunteer,” said Paredes.
Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday says the hit may not be as bad for those who've been with the department for a while...but many on patrol are used to that income, and rely on it.
“Because they did not add that topic to the agenda for our next city council meeting, then the officers will lose anywhere from $200 to $1200 a month in pay,” said Casaday.
He said recruitment could be an issue going forward. Not only are they dealing with no overall contract, but now no money that was promised to recruits.
“It's important to especially pay these young ones because they were recruited and promised this money would come. They feel lied to,” said Casaday.
Casaday is hoping to get the item on the city council agenda in June.