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Lawmakers approve partial raise for LSP

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BATON ROUGE - Facing a deep budget deficit due to plunging oil prices, lawmakers on the state's joint budget committee approved a 20 percent raise for Louisiana State Police Friday.

The vote was 37-8 in favor of the raise, which will affect almost 1,000 troopers starting Monday. It's short of the 30 percent raise LSP Superintendent Mike Edmonson originally asked for.

State Police argued the boost was necessary to stay competitive with other law enforcement agencies in the state, and that Louisiana's pay rate for state troopers lagged behind the rest of the country.

The Legislative Fiscal Office advised against approving the 30 percent raise because they were unsure the fund which covers the costs, the Insurance Verification System Fund, would be able to support it further down the road. Other lawmakers questioned whether the state could afford the raise while they were dealing with a $1.4 billion budget shortfall due to falling oil revenues.

WBRZ will have more on the decision tonight starting on News 2 at 4 p.m.

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