Pay for Ga. Correctional Officers Trails Southeast

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ATLANTA (AP) -- Georgia pays its correctional officers less than other Southeastern states, and retraining new officers cost the public $30 million during the last financial year.

A state audit concluded that increasing compensation alone may not reduce turnover and related retraining costs for new employees. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports ( ) that auditors said long shifts and dangerous conditions are other factors contributing to the turnover.

Lawmakers on the Senate Appropriations Committee sought the review.

The audit found there was a 31 percent turnover rate for correctional officers in the state Department of Corrections during the financial year ending June 30. The cost of replacing more than 2,100 employees was about $19.3 million.

The turnover rate was 57 percent at the Department of Juvenile Justice, leading to retraining costs of $9.7 million.

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