Wicomico County Council Rejects Recommended Pay Raise - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Wicomico County Council Rejects Recommended Elected Official Pay Raise



SALISBURY, Md.-Looks like your tax money won't be going toward recommended pay raises for some Wicomico County elected officials. That was the decision at Tuesday night's council meeting.

Council president, Matt Holloway told WBOC that the county's projected shortfall at the end of fiscal 2014 is $3.5 million which isn't enough to help support the now rejected pay raise.

Nicole Robinson of Mardela Springs said she considers her elected officials in the county hard workers, so when she heard there will be no pay raises for any of them, she wasn't pleased.

"They perform their job to the best of their abilities just like us tax payers do," Robinson said, "especially with the way the economy is I feel like that I get a raise and incentives every year so why shouldn't someone else get one?"

Memo Diriker who is an economic expert and Salisbury University's Beacon director serves on the county appointed committee responsible for recommending pay raises. Diriker said that county elected officials including the sheriff have not received raises in more than  eight years.

"It's not a good idea to keep compensation at the same level beyond the eight or twelve or fifteen years because, the complexity of the job increases and in de-facto you are paying less and less for the same thing"

Tony Fernandez of Salisbury said that if the county is atop a $3.5 million budget shortfall he's not sure why the idea of a pay raise came up in the first place.

"I think they should clean up their own house and cut wasteful spending before even thinking about getting any pay raises to their members," Fernandez said.

Sheriff Mike Lewis said that he's ok with the county's decision but added that pay parity is paramount to keeping good officers on the streets.

"In terms of recruiting and retention it's very important they keep salary increases in mind for our deputies in the future," Lewis said.

Had this pay raise won approval, this would impact the next batch of elected officials.


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