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SEPTEMBER 25, 2008

COUNTY MANAGER’S CONTRACT EXTENDED WITH 7.79% RAISE

 At the September BOC meeting it seems the current BOC majority was trying to tie the hands of the new board members that will take office in January.

 
After much discussion, the board approved extending Greg Williams’ contract until October 31, 2009—well into the next BOC’s first year in office.  This contract also provides for a 7.79% increase, raising the County Manager’s salary to $86,320.

 

The real stickler is that if the next Board decides to hire someone else, Mr. Williams will receive SIX MONTHS severance.

The vote ended with Comm. Yarbrough and Comm. Bernard voting for and Comm. Pennamon against with Comm. Hill abstaining—he first voted no and then changed to abstain.  With this abstension, Comm. Hill allowed the raise and the extension of the contract to proceed.

See the actual contract here.

 
Discussion during the meeting left the impression that the County Manager wrote this contract extension himself.

 
What are the Commissioners thinking?  The entire economy is falling apart and there is a stock market meltdown; the State has a $1.6 Billion budget shortfall and will not send Jasper County at least $400,000 in property tax exemptions; sales tax receipts are down; SPLOST receipts are down; and the county has adopted a spending freeze.  The Schools will also come up short with the State cut backs—estimates of at least $500,000 won’t be far off the mark.

 
The health insurance bill for county employees is around $805,000 a year and there has just been another 7% increase (an additional $56,000-$60,000).  That’s 2 mils of your taxes. 

 
How is a 7.79% pay raise justified for any employee?  Some questions citizen should have expected the Commissioners to ask about the County Manager

  • What are his specific accomplishments over the past 3 years? 
  • What has he done to get a raise?  
  • Has he cut spending?
  • Has he improved procedures to save tax money?
  • Has he written applications for any grants? 
  • Has he promoted the county to entice any new business?
  • Has he given the Commissioner’s good advice?

 

TWG
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