Retired State Trooper and State Senator Bill Carrico endorses Kirk Cox for Governor, launching Partnership for a Safe Virginia

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Cox & Carrico jointly announce plan to invest $50 million in first year of the Cox administration to eliminate salary compression, raise pay for state troopers and sheriff’s deputies

Retired State Trooper and former State Senator Bill Carrico announced Thursday that he would forego a run for governor, citing family and work commitments, and instead endorsed former Virginia House of Delegates Speaker and retired teacher Kirk Cox. Carrico will lead the Cox campaign’s “Partnership for a Safe Virginia,” to bring law enforcement, families, and other partners together to advocate for policies that support law enforcement and keep the Commonwealth safe. The pair also announced a plan to invest $50 million to end salary compression and raise base pay for state troopers and sheriff’s deputies across Virginia.

“Though I believe that I could lead the Commonwealth with integrity and success, I will not seek the Republican nomination for Governor in 2021. I have prayed for wisdom in this decision, and the demands of my full-time job and family will not allow me to run,” said Carrico, who served eight years as a State Senator representing Southwest Virginia. “Even though I will not seek the Republican nomination, I will continue to speak out and lead the fight for a safe Virginia. The Democratic Party is waging a relentless war on law enforcement. We need leaders to stop the insane attacks on law and order before it is too late. Kirk Cox is exactly the kind of leader Virginia needs, and I am proud to endorse him today.”

Carrico added, “I have known Kirk for 19 years and consider him a friend. We are citizen leaders with backgrounds in education and law enforcement. I believe our combined 70 years of experience in our fields will allow us to assist the people of Virginia as they look for leadership that allows them to feel safe and secure in their homes, schools, and while they travel across Virginia enjoying their lives.”

“Bill knows what it takes to serve and lead, having done both as a State Trooper and State Senator. I cannot think of a better partner to have alongside me in this campaign and throughout a four-year term as Governor. The depth of his knowledge on issues related to public safety and transportation is invaluable, and his reputation and credibility among law enforcement and across Southwest Virginia are second to none,” Cox said. “I am asking Bill to lead our new “Partnership for A Safe Virginia” so we can bring law enforcement, families, and other partners together to make the case for new leadership in the Commonwealth.”

“The top priority of our partnership is a new plan we are announcing today to commit $50 million to end salary compression and raise pay for state troopers and sheriff’s deputies. We will implement the Virginia State Police Pay Plan and bring law enforcement together to address structural salary issues plaguing law enforcement across the Commonwealth,” Cox added. “At a time when Democrats are talking about defunding the police, we are going to prioritize public safety, treat our law enforcement officers as the essential heroes they are, and fully fund their needs as a core function of state government.”

“Partisan Democrats do not seem to understand if the people are not safe and they are unable to protect themselves and their property, our economy suffers, our educational abilities are limited, and our constitutional rights will dwindle away. We cannot let that happen, and we cannot abandon the people who keep us safe day in and day out,” Carrico concluded.

Partnership for A Safe Virginia

Former House Speaker, retired teacher, and candidate for Governor Kirk Cox and retired State Trooper and State Senator Bill Carrico are leading the “Partnership for A Safe Virginia.” This coalition-based initiative will bring together law enforcement, Virginia families, and other partners to advocate for policies that defend law enforcement and keep Virginia safe.

The top priority of the Partnership will be a new plan announced by Cox and Carrico to invest $50 million in the first year of the Cox administration to end salary compression and raise pay for state troopers and sheriff’s deputies.

Virginia State Troopers are facing a surge of layoffs and rising turnover as they grapple with salary compression. And the average starting salary for a sheriff’s deputy in Virginia is $33,475.

Together, Cox and Carrico pledge to:

  • Invest $50 million in the first year of a Cox administration for law enforcement salaries
  • Prioritize the implementation of the Virginia State Police Pay Plan
  • Eliminate salary compression for veteran law enforcement officers
  • Raise Base Pay for Troopers and Sheriff’s Deputies
  • Convene a Leadership Group representing various law enforcement groups within the first 100 days to plan the $50 million commitment and address structural salary issues plaguing law enforcement across the Commonwealth