Commission votes to give county employees a pay raise

Published 4:55 pm Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Chilton County Commission voted to give an across-the-board cost of living pay increase to county employees by 3 percent on Monday.

The monetary raise would be the first for some employees in eight years.

Commissioner Joe Headley made the motion to give the increase due to the recent 2-percent cut deducted from social security.

The raise will be deducted from the general fund and go into effect around the first part of February.

Commissioner Tim Mims voted against the increase due to making a vow he would never vote to give himself a pay increase.

“The Omnibus Spending bill (a bill that sets the budget of many departments of the United States government at once) was adopted several years ago and I was against it then,” Mims said. “I would never ever vote to give myself a raise.”

Mims said he had nothing against the employees receiving a raise but he did have a problem with the commission including themselves in the increase.

Mims said there are some department heads that came to the commission after amending their budgets and asking for more funding to give raises to some of their employees in 2012 that will now receive more money with the 3-percent increase.

“They will now be getting two raises essentially,” Mims said. “It just doesn’t make sense to me.”

The commission also gave permission to county engineer Tony Wearren to purchase a 2011 backhoe for $65,000 out of the equipment fund.

Wearren told commissioners the backhoe was “practically new” and had almost two years of warranty left.

Commission chairman Allen Caton told Wearren after he attended a meeting in Pickens County with commissioners Heedy Hayes and Shannon Welch, he noticed a lot of roads throughout the county that were in need of restriping.

“There are a lot of roads that need the stripes to be redone,” Caton said. “County Road 73 is really bad.”

Wearren told Caton there are two options when restriping a road including paint or thermoplastic that often varies in pricing.

“If you choose to paint a road it might not last as long but it will cost a lot less than using thermoplastic,” Wearren said.

Wearren told Caton he would look into different options and let commissioners know what he researched at a future commission meeting.

Commissioner Agee told commissioners due to the lack of pay increases with a tight budget within the county for several years, and various departments in the county not being funded adequately, he had concerns on the quality of life in Chilton County.

“We are either going to grow or get growed over,” Agee said.