Supervisors Express Initial Support To Address County Employee Compensation Shortfalls
At the January 22nd Board of Supervisors meeting, Spotsylvania Sheriff Roger Harris and Spotsylvania Fire Chief Jay Cullinan presented to the Board their concerns (see presentation and video below) with retention and recruitment. Their main challenges appeared to be leadership gaps in the middle of their workforce that they have struggled to address due to structural issues with the County's compensation philosophy and policies. Both told the Board these issues have hindered retention of veteran employees and made it increasingly difficult to attract replacements.
Fire Chief Cullinan told the Board that Fire Rescue and Emergency Management (FREM) and the Sheriff Department would need a total of $2.8 million to address the initial compensation shortcomings with an ongoing expense in the out years of $600,000 per year. If this new approach was successful, some new costs could be offset by reducing the lost training investment dollars when veteran employees depart the County. Currently, the Fire Chief estimated these costs to be roughly $26,750 per employee ( averaged $535,000 per year over the last 3 years). The Sheriff estimated these costs at $75,000 to train a new Deputy.
After the presentation, Supervisors Benton, Marshall, Skinner, and Yakabouski expressed support for the proposal, but added they would like to see it implemented County-wide.
Based on the $2.8 million FREM and Sheriff Department projections, the proposal would represent a slightly more than 2-penny increase on the real estate property tax rate.
Supervisors McLaughlin, Ross, and Trampe, all up to reelection in November, took no clear public stance on the proposal.
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