The Dominoe Effect
Approved by the Budget Committee
Mayor's Salary with 5%
Each Commissioner Pay calculated at 10% of County Mayor's Yearly Salary (2008-2009)
|$70,350||$10,000||$80,350||$ 4017.50||$84,368||$ 8,437|
|Sheriff - Constitutional||$70,350||$ 4915||$75,265||$ 3763.25||$79,028||
Pay Hike for Road Official + Mayor Raise = 10% plus Commissioner Pay Hike!
8 cent Property Hike and Wheel Tax for You and Me!
By: Pat Hunter
Meet the Loudon County Budget Committee. They are in charge of the County Budget and how tax dollars get distributed and sent to the full commission for a vote. The Budget Chairman is Mayor Doyle Arp. There are also four commissioners including D-7 Don Miller, Tellico Village resident, retired Exxon executive. Other commissioners include D-3 Greenback Bob Franke, retired, high ranking military, D-1 Loudon Nancy Marcus, retired Loudon County educator and D-5 Eaton's Chris Park, CVS employee.
The Budget Committee met over a period of several weeks to discuss and go over the Fiscal Year 2008-2009 Budget requests from the various county departments. During this period they voted on 3 percent salary increases for county employees and a list of other things. Click to see proposed FY 08-09 Budget Summary.
Have you ever played a game of Dominoes? There are many games that you can play with Dominoes but one of my favorites is to line up the Dominoes, touch one and watch the ripple and cascade affect. Let me share the ripple effect of the recent actions of the Loudon County Budget Committee.
By raising the pay of the County Road Superintendent by $10,000, this appears to have started a ripple effect that eventually will lead to a hefty commissioner pay raise.
After the Budget Committee openly complained about the Highway Department's proposed deficit in the proposed FY 2008-2009 budget, the Budget Committee voted to recommend doling out a $10,000 Salary Supplement to the County Road Superintendent. His proposed base salary is listed as $70,350 add another $10,000 pay supplement, which then brings his total salary to about $80,350.
The County Mayor's base salary is set by state law due in part to the lobbying efforts of county officials associations. A law was passed by the Tennessee General Assembly in the early 2000, which sets a formula and base pay for all county officials based on population. The County Mayor's base salary for 2008-2009 is supposed to be $73,866. However, if another Constitutional Officer's pay is higher, then 5% is added to the Mayor's salary. The Mayor's salary is always the highest paid of all "county officials" excluding the pay for the general session's judges whom is not considered a "county official" when calculating salaries.
Click blue print to see pdf file.
The Mayor's draft budget work sheet shows an increase in pay over last year. The Mayor's salary was calculated using the County Road Superintendent's pay of $70,350 plus another $10,000 for the salary supplement for a grand total of $80,350, add five percent (5%), which then equals $84,368. The Budget Committee easily approved recommending paying Mayor Arp a salary of $84,368 for the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1, 2008 and ends June 30, 2009.
Why did the Finance Office boost Mayor Arp's salary based on what seems to be erroneous information and tabulation since it appears that the Highway Road Superintendent is not a Constitutional Officer? The Sheriff not the Road Superintendent is the highest paid Constitutional Officer.
Assuming the Finance Director's calculation on the Sheriff's salary is correctly stated at $75,265, then the Mayor's salary should be $75,265 plus 5 percent, which comes to $79,028.00 not $84,368.00, as recommended and voted upon by the Budget Committee.
Click blue print to see pdf file.
The Budget Committee in turn approved and recommended Commissioner's Salary based on 10 percent of the Mayor's salary, which was based on the County Highway Superintendent's salary rather than the Sheriff's salary. That's a pretty good deal if you are a county commissioner because the difference between $8437 and $7903 is $534. Do you think the Budget Committee could use some math classes?
More spending by county officials is at the heart of the problem for two proposed tax increases. Next year, commissioners promise even a larger tax increase purportedly for schools even though Commissioners have not approved a Capital School Building Plan while making plans of bringing in more tax revenues. It looks like the Mayor's rubber stamp spending committee has outdone itself, once again!
The proposed 2008-2009 County Budget will be voted on by the full Commission on June 2, (Monday) at 6:00 PM, Courthouse Annex meeting room, Loudon. Please attend if at all possible, its just your pocketbook.
Click to view County Commissioner Salary Comparisons with other counties & Salary Chart for last 2-years and proposed pay