Pay Raise Coming for State Military Forces as House Passes Exum’s Bill

Legislation would raise current minimum pay from $20 a day to $88 a day

DENVER, CO– The House today passed SB20-091, sponsored by Representative Tony Exum, by a vote of 61-0. The legislation, which would increase the minimum daily pay for state military forces when they are called to serve during emergencies, now awaits the governor’s signature. 

“When our state’s military forces are called to serve during emergencies, the minimum pay is just $20 a day, or $1.67 an hour for a 12 hour shift,” said Rep. Exum, D-Colorado Springs. “That’s appallingly low. The brave men and women who respond to emergencies, such as wildfires and floods, deserve far more. Today, we sent legislation to the governor to more than triple the minimum daily pay for our lowest ranking personnel.”

Under current law, the governor can activate Colorado National Guard units during natural disasters or civil emergencies. The current rate of pay is determined by a member’s rank and years of service. The minimum rate of pay, however, is just $20 a day, and guard members usually work 12 hour shifts, meaning they earn an hourly wage of just $1.67. Often, those called upon are enlisted at a level that pays the lowest rate. Under SB20-091, which is also sponsored by Representative Richard Holtorf, R-Washington County, the minimum rate of pay would be more than tripled to $88 a day.

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