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County Officials To Get Salary Increases

Five elected Tuolumne County officials will see salary increases after the supervisors voted Tuesday morning to hike the annual compensations.

Passing by a 3-to-2 margin, the resolution increases the county sheriff/coroner’s annual salary from the current $85,863 figure to $90,165 a year.

The county district attorney/public administrator will see a salary increase from the current $85,863 figure to $97,830 a year.

The increases were negotiated within parameters specified by the supervisors with the bargaining units.

County administrator C. Brent Wallace told the board the raises reflect an 18-percent increase in Executive/Confidential Compensation Plan health premium rates, effective January 2003. He said the pay adjustments are not a cost of living, or COLA, raise.

The single largest increase in the plan according to Wallace, at about 1.34 percent, is the Cafeteria allowance. That goes up from $515 per month to $559 and $575 per month, and applied to all elected officials, he reported.

“By their choice in allocating this (raise) to the benefit levels, they see a greater return into their benefit coverage because the monies are not taxable, in the sense they´re providing for health and dental and other kinds of insurances,” Wallace said.

Supervisors Mark Thornton and Laurie Sylwester were the two dissenting votes. Thornton voiced his concerns that the salary increases, in part, were merit raises, not merely pre-tax health insurance adjustments.

“I think all five elected officials know that I’ve received complaints on two of them, but not on all five,” Thornton said this morning.

He said he’s worked through a lot of the issues, but, “One of them, I do still have unresolved disappointment about. It´s a package deal and part of the package is what I don´t accept.”

Other county officials getting a raise are the assessor/recorder, auditor/controller/clerk, and the county treasurer/tax collector. A number of classified county employees will also see increases in base salaries.

The raises were effective this past Sunday, October 6th.