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Walker administration admits retroactive pay raise was mistake

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MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - The Walker administration admits making a mistake by giving State Capitol Police Chief David Erwin a retroactive pay raise. 

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel obtained a memo from the administration's chief lawyer, saying it will take back $720 given to the chief. 

Last month, Walker's people insisted they followed the rules when they gave the retroactive raise to Erwin by transferring him to a fake job, then putting him back into his real post with the large raise added on. That raise totaled almost $12,000 a year. 

In state government, retroactive raises can only be given in limited circumstances such as posting errors.

The administration said it erred in posting the maximum salary for Erwin's job. The correction put the chief on par with his predecessor, Charles Tubbs. 

Assembly Democrat Jon Richards of Milwaukee said he's glad the administration admitted a mistake on Erwin's retroactive pay. Still, Richards said wanted a review of the entire process -- including the use of phantom jobs to facilitate large raises for officials. 

Richards' fellow Democrats have used the tactic in the past, too. 

In the Jim Doyle years, some appointees were moved into civil service jobs for a day or two, which guaranteed they'd have state jobs even when losing their political appointments.  

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