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Baker Council votes to raise Police Chief-elect salary

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BAKER- Officials in Baker agreed to raise the city's newly elected Police Chief's salary Tuesday night. However, the council has yet to approve this year's budget.

Police Chief-elect Carl Dunn believes he should be paid more than the $62,000 starting salary. Dunn said that outgoing Police Chief Mike Knaps supported his opponent in the election and cut the position's salary out of spite.

Knaps, who has been with the Baker Police Department for 35 years, says those allegations aren't true, and he's earned his salary over time in the position.

"Chief-elect Dunn is a brand new employee for the city of Baker. He starts at the beginning pay for the chief of police just like any officer starts at the beginning of their scale if they're new here," Knaps told News 2 earlier this month.

Dunn says $83,000 a year to lead the department is the reasonable salary that he'd like. Knaps currently makes just over $93,000 annually.

Despite the council's vote to amend the budget, Baker Mayor Harold Rideau says he's not sure if it's legal to get a raise right after being elected.

Knaps told News 2's Brett Buffington that he spoke up at Tuesday's meeting, trying to explain the process of deciding a salary in Baker. If the council is forced to go by that scale, the new chief would have a starting salary of $62,000.


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