“I work for the zoo. All the time,” she said.
Zoo officials said they will have an increase next year, citing increases in staffing, new policies and improvements to its animal-care facility.
They said they hired more people, including new zoos staff, to prepare for an increase in zoo staff.
As for the raise, zoo officials said it all depends on factors such as inflation rates and how many new volunteers the zoo can draw from.
The zoo’s current annual salary is $63,000, according to city payroll records. It’s not a lot more than the city gives employees for working in the city’s animal-welfare facility.
Last year, for example, the zoo’s budget was $1.45 million.
“Most people wouldn’t make any more money working in the zoo,” McNeil said. “But if you do it in the city of Portland, you make $62,000 a year.”
How will the raises be doled out?
Zoo staffers say they will see more perks, including new uniforms and a new mobile veterinary unit.
“We’ve just had a whole series of changes at the zoo,” McNeil said. “So you see more uniforms around. New computers. We have a mobile unit that will hopefully help move animals around better. And I wouldn’t be surprised if we have a lot more perks for staff, not just for the general staff but for the veterinary staff.”
How long will it take for some of those new benefits to be implemented?
Veterinarians aren’t the only ones who will soon benefit from increased Zoo staff pay.
McNeil said they’ll also see a surge in the number of zoo animals they take in.
“There’s going to be a significant increase in animals we take in,” McNeil said. “If all the vets who are being retained can get these positions, I expect we’ll see a substantial increase in animal admissions.”
But McNeil said they will also have to contend with the fact that the zoo’s zoo director, Peter Kornze, is on the zoo board.
He made his name as the director who ordered the destruction of an endangered leopard cub found in the Portland area.
Those close to McNeil expressed confidence that he can continue to carry out his duties as director through the change in pay.
“I’m sure that we can deal with any financial problems