Corrections employees opt for pay cut over lay off

Save Story

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

DRAPER -- Budget cuts have caught up with the Utah Department of Corrections, and for a couple dozen employees it means major pay cuts.

Some employees are losing a quarter or more of their salary, but when it came to deciding whether they wanted to make less or be out of a job, they chose the pay cut.

"Everyone who was in those positions targeted for elimination was give an option," said Angie Welling, spokeswoman for the Utah Department of Corrections.

It was an offer corrections employees had just a week to contemplate: Take it and make less; leave it and make nothing.

"We know that means an impact on their family. We're talking about people with mortgages and car loans, like all of us have," Welling said.

With $20 million less to spend in 2010, the Utah Department of Corrections is cutting 160 full time positions:

  • Some positions already vacant
  • 2 positions eliminated
  • 20 employees opted for early retirement
  • 24 employees reassigned, with captains becoming sergeants for less responsibility and less pay

"They knew: ‘This is an opportunity for you. Here's the associated salary with that.' And in many cases, it's quite a bit less than they were getting paid. The alternative that they could obviously could say, ‘I'm not interested in that other position' and look for employment elsewhere," Welling said.

In addition to these cuts, the department is cutting the DORA program for drug addicts. It's diagnostic unit and transition center in downtown Salt Lake.

"They'll be felt. We're trying to minimize how much they're felt in the community and by our staff, but you just can't cut that much and lose that much funding without some impact," Welling said.

These are all the cuts happening now. It's unclear, at this point, how they'll play out over the long term and if it could mean more job loss and pay cuts in the future.


Most recent Utah stories

Related topics

Courtney Orton


    Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the Trending 5.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast