College Incentive Pay

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This directive is for internal use only and does not enlarge an employee’s civil liability in any way. The directive should not be construed as creating a higher duty of care, in an evidentiary sense, with respect to third party civil claims against employees. Violations of this directive, if proven, can only form the basis of a complaint by the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office for non-judicial administrative action in accordance with the rules and laws governing employee discipline.
APPROVED BY: Sheriff Ken Christesen EFFECTIVE DATE: 02/14/2016
NMLEA STANDARDS: Not Applicable LAST MODIFIED: 05/18/2017 LAST REVIEW: 05/18/2017


The attainment of a college degree offers both tangible and intangible benefits to employees and the Sheriff’s Office alike. To promote higher education and increase the recruitment of college educated employees, monetary incentives are provided to certified employees who possess or who acquire a college degree.


The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office will offer financial incentives to certified employees and cadets who have or obtain a college degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education. Certified employees hired prior to January 1, 2013 are eligible to receive partial financial incentives for credits earned from a regionally accredited institution of higher education.


To be eligible to receive college incentive pay, certified employees must submit the Sheriff’s Office “Request for College Incentive Pay” form. Official transcripts must be submitted along with the request form to the Undersheriff for approval. It is the responsibility of the employee to complete and submit the required form and transcripts.

Degrees obtained from an on-line college may be accepted provided the college is regionally accredited. Certified employees who possess multiple degrees will only be eligible to collect the financial incentive for one.

College incentive pay is offered at the below listed rates:

  • Associate degree - $150/month
  • Bachelor’s degree - $200/month
  • Master’s degree - $250/month

Certified employees hired prior to January 1, 2013 may be eligible to collect a financial incentive for college credits earned at the below rates following the approval process.

  • 1-9 credit hours $10/month
  • 10-19 credit hours $25/month
  • 20-29 credit hours $45/month
  • 30-39 credit hours $60/month
  • 40-49 credit hours $75/month
  • 50-59 credit hours $90/month
  • 60-69 credit hours $110/month
  • 70-75 credit hours $130/month

Certified employees hired after January 1, 2013 possessing college credit only and not a degree are ineligible for incentive pay.

In addition to the college incentive pay afforded to certified Sheriff’s Office employees, San Juan County also offers college educational assistance to eligible county employees. This process is outlined in the San Juan County Employee Handbook Section 12.7.


  1. San Juan County Employee Handbook; Section 12.7 – Educational Assistance