Commissioners adopt salary survey results

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor

Roosevelt County Commissioners unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday adopting the results of a salary survey that lays out guidelines for new pay scales across every department in the county.

Commissioners passed a resolution earlier this spring adopting a pay scale, but rescinded it after learning chief deputy positions were not addressed adequately. They fixed the problem by capping chief deputy pay at 95 percent of the salary of the elected official for the respective department.

The new plan doesn’t authorize any pay increases, according to County Manager Charlene Hardin. Instead it lays out a range of parameters and assigns a pay grade to each position, noting a minimum, midpoint and maximum for each.

“Are we getting into other people’s business when we do this?” asked Commissioner David Sanders.
Commissioner Dennis Lopez also expressed reservations that commissioners might be treading on other elected officials’ toes.

“You have to set some sort of guidelines,” Hardin said.

She said the plan had been sent to each of the department heads and she hadn’t heard anyone express a problem with the survey.

“Before, our salary was just wide open, and it didn’t address their skill level,” Hardin said.

In other business commissioners:

• Agreed to act as fiscal agent for the Community Services Center for upcoming capital outlay requests. Pam O’Malley, director of the center, said she would likely be requesting $141,000 for three vehicles and office fixtures from the Legislature.

• Approved a proposal from CPA Dan Austin of Ruidoso to be submitted to the state as the county’s auditing agent.

• Renewed an agreement with Lea County to house juvenile prisoners at $85 per day.

• Renewed an agreement with Tnetix for prisoner phone service at the detention center.

• Heard information from Community Resources on the Clean Indoor Air Act that goes into effect June 15.