Gov. Sanders authorizes three percent pay increases for state employees

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 281 views 

Gov. Sarah Sanders on Friday (June 14) authorized a three percent adjustment for pay increases for state employees, effective June 23, 2024. In a letter to state workers, Sanders also outlined a one percent base salary merit raise for executive branch employees and a three percent base salary merit raise for state workers who have exceeded performance evaluations.

“Arkansas’ state government runs on you, our state employees. As my administration works to provide exceptional services to the people of Arkansas at a lower cost, we are relying on you to deliver. In the past 18 months, you have facilitated bold changes to state government, and I am incredibly appreciative of your work,” Gov. Sanders said. “As recognition for your accomplishments – and as an acknowledgment of our need to recruit and retain talented public servants – I worked with the legislature to make a one-time, 3% increase to all Arkansas executive branch state employee’s pay. I am authorizing that adjustment to go into effect on June 23.”

In noting the merit pay raises, Sanders said they would apply to state workers who have worked in the executive branch for at least a year, and who have worked at their current executive department since January 2, 2024.

“We all recognize that our state’s current pay plan is imperfect, which is why I launched the Arkansas Forward initiative and plan to approach the 2025 legislative session with an overhauled pay plan that better rewards performance and keeps us competitive in employee compensation. In the meantime, the pay increases announced are recognition for your past year of hard work,” she said.

Arkansas lawmakers will convene this week to consider income tax cuts amidst the backdrop of a $708.1 million budget surplus.

There are more than 22,000 executive branch workers in Arkansas State government.

The three percent adjustment for pay increase will cost at least $19 million. A firm number for the merit pay raises is unknown at this time.