SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Missouri is a step closer to seeing its highest pay raise ever for state employees.

Lawmakers signed a bill that puts a bill with that pay raise on the governor’s desk. Missouri Governor Mike Parson is expected to sign this bill into law.

According to the National Education Association, the average starting salary for a teacher in Missouri is $33,234. The overall average salary for teachers in the state is $51,557. 

But it isn’t just teachers who are paying close attention to this. Missouri ranks near the bottom among states with low wages for its state workers.

Missouri employs 50,000 state workers and many are leaving their jobs because of the low wages and potentially less stressful jobs.

The governor called for 8.7% percent raise over a month ago in his 2023 State of the State address and it could not come at a better time.

Caregivers continue to leave their careers while seeing a higher demand for their services.   

Governor Parson also wants to increase the shift differential to $2 an hour for state employees who work overnight at prisons, mental health facilities and veterans nursing homes. Those state workers fall under the Departments of Social Services, Corrections, Mental Health and the Missouri Veterans Commission. 

This would be the state’s highest pay raise ever and are hopeful to have this implemented by the end of March.