Thursday, June 26, 2008

Humboldt County Mental Health has 100 "temporary" workers with no benefits. County Supervisors highest paid in state!

Yes, the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors (BOS) are the highest paid per capita (by nearly $30,000 a year) in the state of California at $72,000+ per year. Oh, by the way, they voted themselves a huge raise on top of that recently. How does the average employee for the County do?

The disparity is stunning.

Let's take a look at the Mental Health department as an example. 100 workers are on payroll as "temporary" workers. Many of these are working for less than $10 an hour with no benefits or worker rights! With college degrees! And guess what, many of these workers are eligible for Social Services doled out by the county. But if you talk with most employees, they will tell you where there is waste in their work place from outside contractors that are ignored by superiors in each department. And this theme is continued in other county departments. There needs to be communication and accountability from the BOS through the lowest paid workers. Not happening now.

How can we justify paying our County Supervisors nearly twice as much as counties our size? We can't.


Anonymous said...

There may be a question if the Supes got a raise - the document that was included in the agenda was headed "Elected Officials, etc." but they weren't mentioned in the document. A little confusing at this point.

There are lots of "extra help employees" that fill jobs in the county but they are not "real employees" except they continue to work there year to year. I believe there benefits are not the same as a regular employee.

The Supes don't want accountability. If they would require that they would have to get rid of a lot of people. The Supes always remind everyone that they have a lot to do and then the employees have to get raises (even when the budget doesn't look rosy" because they will leave for another job. Where would they go?? They have good benefits that lots of jobs don't have. There are lots of employees that could not make their county salary in a job in the private sector. Excuses and whine, whine from the Supes is what we get. What will we get when the elections are over? Probably more of the same.

Anonymous said...

The following is a news release sent out by the Humboldt Taxpayer's League on June 13, 2006.

As far as I know it did not appear in any of the media.

**** NEWS RELEASE ****


From the Humboldt Taxpayer’s League

The Humboldt Taxpayer’s League (HTL) Board of Directors has voted unanimously to explore the feasibility of sponsoring a local initiative to limit the salaries of the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors.

This action by the HTL board is in response to a proposed salary increase currently before the Board of Supervisors which would raise their current salary of nearly $75,000 per year to $79,128 annually. Research shows that the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors is already the highest paid board for a county of similar size anywhere in the state with the possible exception of Placer County whose supervisors’ salary is limited by their county charter.

The HTL board feels one possible solution to limiting the county supervisor’s salaries is to cause a local initiative to be passed that tie supervisor salaries to the local individual median income which is currently $28,736 (2006 taxable year). By tying the salaries to the median income the HTL board feels that the average person on the street could relate to how much supervisors are making and how their salary is set. The HTL is considering asking the public to set board salaries at two times the county’s median individual income which would equal nearly $58,000 per year for each supervisor with increases as the economy improves in accordance with the income reported by the state Franchise Tax Board. The HTL also feels strongly that the “seniority bonus” currently granted long term supervisors should be immediately stopped.

The Humboldt County Supervisors are expected to vote on the possible increase at the Tuesday, June 17, 2008 meeting.

samoasoftball said...

10:15am-Just for the record, Placer County pays $30,000 a year to their BOS and they have 200,000 more people they serve.

I agree with the HTL on their premise.

Why we have become so out of whack with the rest of the state is beyond me.

Anonymous said...

The BOS has to pay a lot to get "good" people to run. It's hard work. Committee meetings that some of them don't attend ever, various other appointments to committees that meet out of town and you have to read the Tuesday meeting packet (lol) and listen to those crazed folks public comments and complaints. Now who would want to do that for less money? Do they actually think they are fooling all of the people? They do fool a lot though.

I wonder how many counties pay their CAO $148,000 plus benefits? Where do you go to get that information Richard???

Anonymous said...

I was glad to see that both Fennell and Lovelace came out against the pay raise.

Maybe we could get a left/right coalition behind this initiative if it's written in a sane way, so that supervisors' salaries can be adjust for inflation, but not raised significantly.

Anonymous said...

The thought behind tying the Supervisor salaries to the local individual median income, as determined by the Franchise Tax Board, is that it would reflect increases, or decreases, in local earned income. Every candidate and sitting Supervisor say that the economy is their number one priority, this way they could earn their salary increases by helping to improve the economy.

Anonymous said...

Is this the highest and best use of our precious time on earth?

Anonymous said...

To 4:51 p.m. - Could be the most important thing - when the County's budget goes into the toilet as the State grabs money. What will they decide to cut?? Certainly not their hard earned raises!

Anonymous said...

I don't think this is really about Supes salary. If they are effective and wise, its cheap at twice the price. If they're flacks and hacks almost any amount is too much. Folks, you get the Goverment you vote for and put up with. I'd say there's much bigger consensus that the County salaries are bloated. But how could anyone get elected here on a platform of holding down salaries when county jobs are such a big part of the economy?