State salary survey figures questioned by state Republican senators

DENVER - A CALL7 Investigators exclusive: Senate Republicans are taking aim at the state's most recent salary survey, using Colorado Department of Corrections workers as an example of its inaccuracy.

CALL7 investigator Theresa Marchetta obtained a copy of a letter sent to the Department of Personnel and Administration, signed by Colorado's 15 Republican state senators.

Their main concern is that salaries paid to DOC employees are much higher than fair market rates.

Sen. Kent Lambert, who is a member of the Joint Budget Committee, says lawmakers want to know if DOC salaries could be a major cause of the lack of funds the agency claims to have in other areas.

"Private prisons on average have a salary of about $34,500 per employee.  The state employees' average is over $51,000 per employee," said Lambert. "By law, they are supposed to compare those.  They did not."

The letter cites the legislatively-mandated "prison utilization study" as the source of the figures Lambert mentioned.

The state senators want the 2013 salary report corrected prior to its release on Aug. 1.          

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