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Thomson prison workers receive boost in locality pay

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Correctional officers and staff at the federal prison in Thomson will receive a pay increase, the union representing those workers announced on Friday.

For several years, American Federation of Government Employees Local 4070 had sought a change to its “locality pay.” Previously, members of the local had been designated as “Rest of the U.S.”

Under the new designation, the Carroll County’s locality pay is adjusted to align with that established for federal employees in the Quad Cities. The President’s Pay Agent made the determination in a report issued Wednesday.

Jon Zumkehr president AFGE Local 4070, and U.S. Rep Bustos, D-17th District pose in an undated photo at Thomson Prison.

Jon Zumkehr president AFGE Local 4070, and U.S. Rep Bustos, D-17th District pose in an undated photo at Thomson Prison. (Submitted by Jon Zumkehr/)

“We are beyond pleased that our hard-working employees will be moved into the higher paying locality,” said Jon Zumkehr, president of Local 4070. “This change, in addition to the 25% retention pay we already secured, will go a long way toward helping us retain our experienced staff and recruit the additional staff we desperately need.”

The Federal Salary Council makes recommendations about locality pay and the three members of The President’s Pay Agent makes a final determination. The President’s Pay Agent includes the Secretary of Labor and the leaders of the Office of Management and Budget and the Office of Personnel Management.

In September, the Office of Personnel Management had approved a request from the Bureau of Prisons to provide all prison employees with 25% retention pay.

The local has worked with management to hold job fairs each month in 2021 to fill staff vacancies at the prison.

This year the prison has hired 115 corrections officers. Staffing is at 84%. The increase in employees was a factor in the prison qualifying for higher locality pay.

A 37-year-old Thomson prison inmate from Arizona died Friday after a fight with another inmatet, the Federal Bureau of Prisons said in a news release Friday night.

A 37-year-old Thomson prison inmate from Arizona died Friday after a fight with another inmatet, the Federal Bureau of Prisons said in a news release Friday night. (Earleen Hinton/)

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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