The deputy warden position at the Erie County Prison is up for grabs. But qualified candidates are losing interest.
"The top 20 candidates refuse to interview because the salary is too low." said Erie County Executive Barry Grossman.
The starting salary is currently $43,000 a year. But Grossman is asking Erie County Council to raise the annual pay to $75,000.
"In order to get good qualified candidates we want to go outside the culture over there," said Grossman. "We're going to have to, just like we did with the safety center and the Office of Children and Youth, we have to get good candidates, we have to go outside and pay attention to the marketplace."
Erie County Councilman Phil Fatica says there are a lot of factors to consider.
"The jail operates seven days a week, 52 weeks a year, three shifts every day," said Fatica. "So it's 24-7 all the time and the person who is in charge, is on call 24-7. So you have to pay for good people, and council knows that."
The deputy warden will take over as Warden James Veshecco's successor. Veshecco currently makes over $80,000 a year and plans on retiring at the end of 2013.
"We're looking at a warden in waiting," said Grossman. "So council knows that, and I think they'll cooperate and set a salary that will competitive."
County council is expected to discuss this situation at their next meeting, which is scheduled for next Tuesday.