Gov. Cooper's Cabinet gets double-digit pay raises

RALEIGH, NC (WTVD) -- North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper's Cabinet members have received hefty additional raises since getting appointed last year above and beyond the $1,000 increases lawmakers approved for state employees last summer.

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The state personnel office provided salary data Tuesday showing nine of the 10 Cabinet members getting 10 percent increases on Jan. 1.

Transportation Secretary Jim Trogdon got an 11 percent raise, bringing his salary to almost $218,000 - the Cabinet's highest.

In addition, Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy Cohen saw her salary rise 22 percent last July 1. She's now paid $192,500.

State law sets Cooper's $144,399 salary, but he decides on Cabinet pay.

Cooper spokeswoman Noelle Talley said the raises are about retaining and encouraging department leadership who take on tremendous responsibilities.

Cooper said these are leaders who affect over 10 million North Carolinians and he wants to keep them in place.

"We have pulled together an extraordinarily talented group of secretaries.," Cooper said. "They're recognized by both Republicans and Democrats as highly competent and one of the best cabinets in the country ... I want to make sure that we keep them in place. I believe that they're providing strong leadership."

Charlotte's WBTV first reported the increases.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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