County commission discusses budget

Administration/Finance, Page 3

Ayscue informed commissioners that the department was requesting more for computer system upgrades.

Tucker explained that the file server in that department is six to seven years old and that there has been trouble with the backup. He explained that backup is a must. He went on to say that the software the department uses will no longer be supported and that to use the new software will require a server upgrade.

The discussion then turned to the travel budget. Hester noted that the travel budget had increased, and said that with the cost of fuel, it should go up. Tucker explained that an employee did not take a scheduled trip. Ayscue explained that employees use their personally owned vehicles and are reimbursed. He said that in July the county will go to the maximum rate allowed by the federal Internal Revenue Service. He said that there is also a small increase in travel allowances as well.

Ayscue informed the board during this discussion that there had been an increase in insurance and bonds for employees classified as municipal employees. He said that he did not understand it, but that it was an industry-wide trend.

The discussion turned once again, this time to salaries. Ayscue stated that when raises are performance-based, starting salaries stay the same. He told commissioners that it has been a real problem.

Brown stated that she would be interested to see the evaluations. She said that they are sometimes based on who likes who.

Referring to a salary study that may have been contained in this part of the budget, Wright stated that he would like the salary study to include the county manager. He said he had seen the salary of the city manager and that “either we’re off base or they’re off base”.

Wright also said that a salary adjustment was necessary for Vance County jailers. He said that the situation was a “catastrophe waiting to happen”.

The board agreed to raise the salaries of jailers by 10% and to allow the manager to receive bids for a salary study. The amount came to approximately $110,000 plus benefits, or a little more than one-half penny on the tax rate.