A pair of state lawmakers are criticizing a new program through which the Wisconsin Department of Corrections is issuing $5-per-hour raises at every maximum-security prison besides the one in Boscobel.

Wisconsin Rep. Travis Tranel, R-Cuba City, issued a statement Thursday morning in response to a reported DOC announcement about the raise.

“The employees in (the Wisconsin Secure Program Facility in) Boscobel are dealing with the exact same prison population as these other maximum security institutions: murderers, rapists, gang members, drug dealers — the worst of the worst,” Tranel said in the statement. “To value their work as less than that of someone else who is doing the exact same job is reckless and irresponsible.”

According to an email from a DOC official, leadership will offer the $5-per-hour bonus for all those hired at six correction facilities until June 20, 2020.

A statement from Wisconsin Sen. Howard Marklein, R-Spring Green, said Boscobel staffers “are being left behind their colleagues” at other institutions because job retention has been strong.

“The $5-per-hour increase gives all other correctional officers the potential to earn $10,000 more per year for doing the exact same job,” Marklein said in the statement. “I would not be surprised if the Boscobel prison suddenly develops a vacancy problem now that Gov. (Tony) Evers’ administration has created a strong incentive for correctional officers to transfer to other institutions.”