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Letter: Increases appear to be business as usual, he says

TO THE EDITOR: At the next county board meeting March 23, 2010, the county board will vote on a potential increase in salary for the sheriff and clerk of courts for the next four years.

What already has been recommended is a 2.5 percent increase for each year for the next four years for the sheriff. The clerk of courts is a 5.5 percent increase for the first year to catch up to the other three (treasurer, county clerk and register of deeds) and then a 2.5 percent increase each year for the following three years.

They also receive the same health insurance and retirement program of over 10 percent of their respective salary, all funded by the county (taxpayers). Pierce's salaries are in the middle, with some county comparables higher, some lower.

I asked my fellow supervisors what economic indicators were used to decide the percentage increase? Recent increases in county government was the answer. Then I asked specifically outside of county government? None was the answer.

These proposed increases appear to be business as usual with little or no regard to the residents and taxpayers of Pierce County.

Later this year, Pierce County will begin negotiations with its six union labor groups whose contracts end Dec. 31, 2010. If you have an opinion or concern on these issues, contact your county supervisor prior to March 23, 2010.

#1 Leo Simones, 651-492-2353; #10 James Ross, 715-639-6114; #2 Jim Camery, 715-220-7643; #11 Don Rohl, 715-273-4492; #3 Rich Purdy, 715-425-0040; #12 Greg Place, 715-273-5168; #4 Ben Plunkett, 715-426-5838; #13 Dan Reis, 715-425-7839; #5 Paul Barkla, 715-425-6929; #14 Ron Bartels, 651-380-9878; #6 Nikki Shonoiki, 612-644-2848; #15 Jerry Kosin, 715-262-5677; #7 Ron Lockwood, 715-426-5388; #16 Jeff Holst, 715-792-2732; #8 John Kucinski, 715-425-5131; #17 Mel Pittman, 715-647-5023; #9 Ken Snow, 715-684-4988.