To help boost morale in the wake of former Sheriff Greg Solano's fall from grace, Santa Fe County Sheriff Robert Garcia has promoted 12 people within the department since November, and says two more promotions are on the horizon. Four deputies became corporals, four corporals became sergeants, two sergeants became lieutenants, a captain became a major and Major Ron Madrid became undersheriff.
According to county salary range data, just the deputies' and corporals' promotions represent a minimum annual pay increase of $4,160 and $5,969 respectively, per hire.
"Money shouldn't be a moral booster but, in some cases I guess it does help," Garcia says.
Solano formulated the FY11 budget. County Commissioner Liz Stefanics says that budget may have the wiggle room to make the promotions possible, but if Garcia "runs out of money this [fiscal] year, it's his problem, not ours, because we're not going to approve any increases."