Governor approves pay raises for state employees

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Tuesday approved performance-related merit pay raises of as much as 3% for state employees.

Hutchinson announced that $28 million in state and federal funds was allocated for the merit pay increases, which he said will be the largest performance pay raises offered since he took office in 2015.

Hutchinson cited the work from the state’s employees in response to the coronavirus pandemic. He said the raises will be added to employees’ existing pay and won’t be a one-time raise. Nearly 26,000 employees are eligible for the raises.

“This last year, our workforce has shown dedication, resilience and flexibility during this pandemic,” Hutchinson said at a news conference. “It’s been circumstances that no workforce has been through in the last 100 years.”