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  #11  
Old 02-02-2006
Mike W. Mike W. is offline
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I still find it amazing that agencies feel they are paying an officer enough to do what we do when they pay around $10 an hour. Before the municipality took over its own animal control, the SPCA paid its workers $9 an hour. Now, for the municipality, I make over $23 an hour. This pay is still not great but it is a lot more comfortable than what the SPCA was paying its staff. Our jobs are not unlike police work and to be paid less than half of what they make is rediculous. Here in Canada, were we are taxed very generously...generous to the goverment that is, and we still take home a minimum of $1200 every two weeks, and that is without any overtime or on call shifts. But hey, most of us are not in this career for the money, right?
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  #12  
Old 02-02-2006
ACO in Greenville,TX ACO in Greenville,TX is offline
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Wait a minute. You make $23.00 an hour and that isn't great? What's great for an ACO in Canada? I'm not current on the exchange rate, but wouldn't that be something like $18-19 US? I'd just about give my right arm to be making that and I'm a supervisor for the last 10 years. We are fighting to get put on the same level as Code Enforcement. Our city is doing a job rating study, so the guys and I are really putting in everything we do into the survey. We'll see.
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  #13  
Old 02-02-2006
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Mike-
You are right on to my mind. The tendency to view and treat ACOs as adjunct humane society workers has done a disservice to ACOs in a variety of ways and the pocketbook is a major one.

I don't even think the case has has to be made that ACOs perform law enforcement functions...the code enforcement functions ACOs perform justify upward salary adjustments in most of the cases I'm seeing.

Greenville-
Not just exchange rates but tax rates & cost of living need to be taken into account.
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  #14  
Old 02-02-2006
Mike W. Mike W. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ACO in Greenville,TX
Wait a minute. You make $23.00 an hour and that isn't great? What's great for an ACO in Canada? I'm not current on the exchange rate, but wouldn't that be something like $18-19 US? I'd just about give my right arm to be making that and I'm a supervisor for the last 10 years. We are fighting to get put on the same level as Code Enforcement. Our city is doing a job rating study, so the guys and I are really putting in everything we do into the survey. We'll see.
$23 an hour is not great money, it is ok, but not great. I came from corrections to this position and took a small pay cut to do it. The reason I took the cut was to have more stability in hours and not have to bounce from one position to another (I had 3 jobs in corrections...all by choice). I really enjoy this position but I do miss some aspect of corrections. And again, I am not doing this for the money. And it is a shame that as a supervisor you make less than I do. Are you employed by a humane society or township/municipality/city? With the exchange rate, where 1 US dollar equals $0.87 Canadian dollars, I am making roughly $40,000 US, maybe a little less. Cost of living is higher here with the tax situation being what it is, but we do have free healthcare which is great.
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  #15  
Old 02-02-2006
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Here in Santa Clara County we start at $19.45 per hour plus awesome benefits that equal another $10.00 per hour. So I feel that we get paid great. After working in the cable vision industry for 15 years I was only making $21.00 per hour and had to pay most of my benefits out of that so i feel I got a huge raise coming over to be an ACO, and also I found a job I can really sink my teeth into. Sorry, Had to say it.
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  #16  
Old 02-02-2006
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Kristen,

I'm sure your mom only has, what she believes to be, your best interest at heart. If this career is something that you really think you want...go for it. Try to explain to your mother that the majority of ACO's do have a college education...the "dog catcher" died a long time ago and was replaced by the ACO. You will need to know all the laws in your area, as they pertain to your job. You will need excellent people skills, compassion and an ability to do a quick reading on the person telling you their story,at least basic medical animal knowledge, knowledge of animal behaviors, breed identification, species identification...etc.

There is sooooooooooooooo much more involved in AC work then simply catching loose dogs. Many people don't realize it, so don't be too hard on her...do what we do and take this as an opportunity to educate her.

Now..as far as pay......lol....if that is your deciding factor....be a doctor. Just kidding. I am a lone ACO for a beach front community and make $16.80 an hour. The job can take you in, chew you up, spit you out and then roll on you like a large wet St Bernard on a piece of carcus if you let it. As long as you go in knowing who you are and what, if any, your limitations are...you should do ok. You're only going to need 2 things to survive in this job. 1) the ability to laugh and 2) the ability to regrow your head everytime it gets ripped off...it will happen..which is why number 1 is the most important!

Ok...done babbling!
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  #17  
Old 02-02-2006
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Greenville-
For comparison's sake:

Nova Scotia Provincial Income Tax Rate: 16%

California State Income Tax Rate: 9.3%

Massachusetts State Income Rate: 5.3%

Texas State Income Tax Rate: 0%

...and that doesn't even begin to factor cost of living.

It's not just what you make...it's what you get to keep.
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  #18  
Old 02-02-2006
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Gross weekly Salary: $672.00
Taxes, medical: $179.00
Net Salary: $493

BILLS:

Gas for vehicle to get to work: $40 – amount left $453
Insurance for above vehicle: $20 – amount left $433
Cleaner for animal “remnants” in above vehicle: $20 – amount left $413
Food for humans in household: $120 – amount left $293
Food for permanent pets in household: $40 – amount left $253
Food for “temp” pets in household: $40 – amount left $213
Toys/beds for “temp” pets in household: $45 – amount left $168
Toys/beds for now jealous permanent pets: $45 – amount left $123
Kleenex for work vehicle and yours: $5 – amount left $118
Band-aids and Ace bandages for both vehicles: $30 – amount left over $88
Laundry, dry cleaning for animal matter covered uniform: $20 – amount left over $68
Dog/cat treats for both vehicles: $10 – amount left over $58
Payment to vet for tab at office: $20 – amount left over $38
Lunch on the run in work vehicle: $30 – amount left over $8
Tums for the above lunches: $8 – amount left over $0
Rent/mortgage for home: $85 – amount in hole $85
Utilities for home: $50 – amount in hole $135
Loving what you do for a living: $priceless – for everything else…there is another job.
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  #19  
Old 02-02-2006
Doglaw Doglaw is offline
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Well, kids, let me wade into this at least up to my armpits! I'm and ACO in Knoxville, TN and our starting salary is $22,400/yr. We have pretty good benefits since we are a division of the PD. It is pretty difficult to get a raise but I'm hoping to get on with the Fire Dep't!
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  #20  
Old 02-02-2006
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I think we can safely say that none of us is making what we should for the type of jobs that we perform.
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