I can't believe they can't fill these positions!

Why take any useless degree but not

-4 years of military
-6 years of trade school

I did It the right way. I have no school debt, served my country, carry a high security clearance, clean background, great credit history, actually have 12 credits in fish/wildlife biology, and an avid steward of the natural resources. Yet... they wont even look at my application. They rejected it and say I am unqualified. But will hire some jackass with an underwater basket weaving degree... sounds like their priorities are off and that is why they are hurting to fill positions... along with all of the other stated concerns.
Whole heartedly agree with you
 
Also, says right in that description, ANY BA degree. Biology or Law preferred but the way I read it, a BA In transgender basket weaving would still qualify. Make it make sense.
What’s wrong with a degree in transgender basket weaving? You one of those far rightist fascists?
 
No, but that’s the point. Raise the pay appropriately and you don’t need to lower requirements, as more qualified individuals would apply. And more experienced wardens would stay on longer too reducing the need to fill vacancies.
I understand what you're saying, a degree is a great and yes it should pay more 100%. However there are tons of folks out there just as qualified if not more without a degree. You can disagree all you want.
 
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Except ‘more applicants’ doesn’t mean ‘good applicants.’

I don’t like to settle for less when it comes to the things I care about (natural resources, our public servants who steward and protect them).

Also it’s a slap in the face to our current wardens who are degree’d, that it’s acceptable to just lower the standards and continue to pay them less than what they deserve.
Okay. That's one thought.

I think it's a slap in the face to continue to ALWAYS be under staffed. Wildlife doesn't benefit from vacancies.

Sign me up for thinking people that care about wildlife > someone who has a degree. The piece of paper I have doesn't mean a gd thing, except I paid a bunch of money for it. The longer I work the less I care about that piece of paper and the more I care about people.
 
Okay. That's one thought.

I think it's a slap in the face to continue to ALWAYS be under staffed. Wildlife doesn't benefit from vacancies.

Sign me up for thinking people that care about wildlife > someone who has a degree. The piece of paper I have doesn't mean a gd thing, except I paid a bunch of money for it. The longer I work the less I care about that piece of paper and the more I care about people.
Yup.
 
If you want to dive into a snake pit and teach in Portland, as a result of a recent strike, in 3 years half of Portland Public Sch. teachers will have a $100K salary. Cost of living hurts too, however.

In 1993 my dad was a teacher in Muskegon MI, moved us out from CO because the salaries in MI we’re double CO.

He was paid $42k which is equivalent to $102k today, COL in Muskegon in the 90s was waaaay less than Portland today.

Wages for a lot of Americans just haven’t kept pace.
 
Maybe they have something similar to this already, but if they want/need a college degree to be qualified why don’t they go to the state schools and recruit freshman to start working seasonally. 1 summer work with fisheries, 1 summer work with wildlife, 1 summer work with law enforcement. After graduation, completing the law enforcement academy, and 1 year of service your school debt is forgiven.
 
Maybe they have something similar to this already, but if they want/need a college degree to be qualified why don’t they go to the state schools and recruit freshman to start working seasonally. 1 summer work with fisheries, 1 summer work with wildlife, 1 summer work with law enforcement. After graduation, completing the law enforcement academy, and 1 year of service your school debt is forgiven.
This kinda thing is what Biden's SAVE plan is trying to address in conjunction with actually enforcing the PSLF rules.

So since Feb 2023, one can apply for the income driven loan repayment SAVE plan. Under this plan your monthly payment is calculated on what you earn. It's based on your AGI but for a family of four making <$67k you pay $0 a month.

So a rookie game warden making $40k would likely have a payment of like $30-50ish, as long as they made these payments the government would pay the rest of their interest so their loan balance wouldn't grow. A game warden would also qualify for PSLF so after 10 years of work their loan balance would be forgiven.

This would be true for teachers, LEOs, most nurses, etc.

The other important change is you can file your taxes married filing separate and just use the income of the loan holder. So if said game warden married a lawyer they wouldn't necessarily have to blow up their repayment strategy.

Again this is all new circa this year.
 
Thought this would be fun...

"There were 55 game wardens in the State of Wyoming, an elite group, and Joe Pickett and Wacey were two of them. Wacey had received his B.A. in wildlife management while bull-riding at summer rodeos before Joe had graduated with a degree in natural resource management. Three years apart, both had been certified at the state law enforcement academy in Douglas and both had passed the written and oral interviews, as well as the personality profile, to become permanent trainees in Jeffrey City and Gillette districts respectively, before becoming wardens. Each now made barely $26,000 a year." -Open Season by C.J. Box, 2001

So adjusted for inflation Joe makes $45,000, but also has free housing via the state. Average price home in WY current is $316,000 so assuming Joe puts down virtually nothing, just enough to cover fees, he is paying ~$2500 + let's say $200 a month in insurance. So $2700 x12 = $32,400 and that's using after tax dollars. So $36,288

Therefore a warden in 2023 in WY would need to make $81,288 in order to be at the same level of income as Joe in the first book, assuming WY no longer covers Warden housing..

TLDR Montana is paying their Warden's half of what Joe Pickett made and wondering why they can't fill positions.
 
Thought this would be fun...

"There were 55 game wardens in the State of Wyoming, an elite group, and Joe Pickett and Wacey were two of them. Wacey had received his B.A. in wildlife management while bull-riding at summer rodeos before Joe had graduated with a degree in natural resource management. Three years apart, both had been certified at the state law enforcement academy in Douglas and both had passed the written and oral interviews, as well as the personality profile, to become permanent trainees in Jeffrey City and Gillette districts respectively, before becoming wardens. Each now made barely $26,000 a year." -Open Season by C.J. Box, 2001

So adjusted for inflation Joe makes $45,000, but also has free housing via the state. Average price home in WY current is $316,000 so assuming Joe puts down virtually nothing, just enough to cover fees, he is paying ~$2500 + let's say $200 a month in insurance. So $2700 x12 = $32,400 and that's using after tax dollars. So $36,288

Therefore a warden in 2023 in WY would need to make $81,288 in order to be at the same level of income as Joe in the first book, assuming WY no longer covers Warden housing..

TLDR Montana is paying their Warden's half of what Joe Pickett made and wondering why they can't fill positions.
That's just adjusting for housing.
 
So a rookie game warden making $40k would likely have a payment of like $30-50ish, as long as they made these payments the government would pay the rest of their interest so their loan balance wouldn't grow.
You mean the tax payers would be paying the rest of their interest. The student loan forgivenes is a joke.

-I stand corrected

After reading the puposed SAVE act, they wouldnt charge interest on low income borrowers. Its not that the govt would pay the interest. I think thats a great idea.

Still dont agree with the student loan forgiveness though.
 
In WY, both biologists and wardens are paid in the ballpark of $60-70k.

WY wardens are still provided housing in most cases.

WY has the same hiring and retention problems with wardens, but biologist openings are still highly competitive. Biologists also are generally required to have bachelors and masters degrees.

Food for thought. The warden shortage isn’t necessarily as simple as low pay.
 
Slightly revised though alternative options to incentivise recruitment and retention.
As mentioned before:
Tuition paid off from In State University over 20 years,
Dependants tuition paid In State University,
and... <Revised>
Active and Retired: "Stewardship" over State or Federal land.
State owned housing for Wardens, retired or not, connected to Federal or on State trust land.
An offset of mortgage is an obvious perk and to extend it into retirement enhances employment longevity.
We want good stewards for our public lands - LEOSA or not, a retired Warden would be a great Steward/witness.
I'd imagine, and I would support $ to my organizations such as, RMEF, TNC, TPL, in conjunction with the State, engaging in the acquisition and development of adjacent land to federal and State public land for housing Wardens, active and retired.
The organizations mentioned are always actively involved in the improvement of our lands - maybe qualified "Stewards" would be a value worth the $(?). I'm sure we could argue over this though... In the end, better to have than not, IMO.

Additional to the Warden housing:
Use an example from Federal job options. While abroad (OCONUS), there are permanent federal career opportunities that grant competitive status for spouses...
For Montana, utilize a family support mechanism of this nature that allows a spouse competitive application for State positions available via "remote", "telework", or at work sites throughout the State.
This type of perk would give an additional option for Warden families further financial stability to remain / move as Wardens often do over the course of their career.

Rambling thoughts.
 
You mean the tax payers would be paying the rest of their interest. The student loan forgivenes is a joke.

-I stand corrected

After reading the puposed SAVE act, they wouldnt charge interest on low income borrowers. Its not that the govt would pay the interest. I think thats a great idea.

Still dont agree with the student loan forgiveness though.

These are federal loans not private so not charging v. Paying is the same thing. The forgiveness is the federal government in effect subsidizing the cost of training folks.

There is no program for private loans you have to pay those yourself.
 
These are federal loans not private so not charging v. Paying is the same thing. The forgiveness is the federal government in effect subsidizing the cost of training folks.

There is no program for private loans you have to pay those yourself.
Federal loans are backed with federal money, which comes from the tax payers. Essentially we are paying for others educational loans that were forgiven. I call that a form of socialism... along with welfare.

I digress, I dont want to turn this form into political trash. Not what Im here for.
 
Federal loans are backed with federal money, which comes from the tax payers. Essentially we are paying for others educational loans that were forgiven. I call that a form of socialism... along with welfare.

I digress, I dont want to turn this form into political trash. Not what Im here for.

The thread is about a lack of Wardens which is 100% about pay.

All the rural states have the same problems when it comes to filling public service positions. What school district is the west doesn’t struggle to fill jobs.

I didn’t say this was a good or bad program, you interjected your opinion. I stated “this is how things currently worked”.

End of the day we pay for things either with state taxes, federal taxes, local taxes (sales, property etc) or by lack of services.

There is no free lunch. If folks want to go without that is certainly their prerogative, but that is the trade off and there are no two ways about it.

And of course it’s socialist, all public institutions are socialist by definition. The alternative would be the company towns of the 19th century, think Liverpool, where a company provided all the housing, schools, police, etc for an entire community and basically owned the lives of their employees. In this country that’s how we got the robber barons. The irony of this is that the President who fought most vociferously for the middle class and public institutions was none other than Teddy Roosevelt.
 
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I can get on board with some kind of repayment of student loans after so many years of service. Lots of states do that for hard-to-fill positions or locations. For example, Alaska will pay off your student loan if you go out to teach in some of the remote villages for a few years. ND will pay off loans if you work in certain sectors of public service in rural communities for like 10 years I believe. Many states will pay off med school bills for folks that go practice in underserved rural communities. I think if you are filling a job for which there is a proven need, repayment to help attract applicants is fine.

Giving away public land as a job perk is a nonstarter for me.

The thread is about a lack of Wardens which is 100% about pay.
Lack of pay is certainly a large part of the problem, but the remote living and lack of access to job opportunities for spouses is also a significant issue. Being stationed in Plentywood or Harlowton doesn’t give your significant other a lot of options for work, which can be a deal breaker when living costs are so high and wages so low. I kind of like @Sytes idea for some kind of hiring authority or preference or employment assistance for spouses.
 
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