TOP PHOTO: At last week’s workshop, commissioners had discussed how to retain sheriff’s employees.
By Charlotte Underwood
JACKSBORO, TN (WLAF) – At Monday evening’s meeting, commissioners voted to discuss and “look at” the possibility of county employee raises during next fiscal year’s budget discussions.
At last week’s workshop, commissioners had discussed how to retain sheriff’s employees after Commissioner Scott Kitts brought the issue up at that meeting, saying the sheriff’s department was losing employees to higher paying jobs in surrounding counties. At the workshop, Kitts had said he intended to make a motion asking the finance department to look for funding for raises to help that department retain employees.
Several commissioners voiced that the county had already passed its budget and that the time to discuss this issue was during “budget discussion sessions.”
At Monday’s meeting, Kitts amended his motion to reflect this, saying that “due to the fact that the 2023-24 budget has been approved by both the county and the state of Tennessee, I motion to request that during the budget process of fiscal year 2024-25 we look into providing a raise to all county employees, inclusive of the sheriff’s office employees,” Kitts said.
Commissioner Rusty Orick seconded his motion.
As county employees, Commissioners Tyler King, Beverly Hall and David Adkins abstained from voting. The other 10 commissioners present voted in approval.
During last week’s workshop, Sheriff Wayne Barton spoke to commissioners, confirming that.
In the last 60 days, his department has lost four or five employees to better paying jobs, saying Anderson County was the biggest challenge his department faced in retaining employees
“They start their deputies at $21.25 an hour. It’s difficult to compete with them; we’ve lost two that left to go to be SRO’s in Anderson County,” Barton said.
Caryville and LaFollette Police Department also pay higher than the county.
According to Barton, in Campbell County, “new hire deputies start at $17.15 an hour.”
He said it would cost $1 more on the hour, and approximately $300,000 more funds yearly to compete with some of these other counties. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 08/22/2023-6AM)