RIO RANCHO, N.M. (KRQE) – The latest budget recommendation to the Rio Rancho Mayor and City Council includes a ‘cost-of-living’ pay boost for Rio Rancho employees. The City Manager also recommends boosting starting pay for permanent workers.

In his fiscal year 2024 budget recommendation, City Manager Matt B. Geisel says that a 4% cost-of-living adjustment for all employee groups would help the city retain workers. The city gave similar boosts in fiscal years 2022 and 2023.

Geisel also recommends putting $300,000 aside for raising the minimum permanent staff salary to $14.14 per hour, which is closer to what the state government pays starting employees.

Overall, Geisel says Rio Rancho’s financial outlook is positive, noting that revenues beat low estimates of how the pandemic recovery might play out. But, he does note that rising medical costs mean city worker health insurance costs are rising.