June 1, 2005
The Albemarle County Board of Supervisors gave themselves a raise.
"It's very difficult to raise your own salary," said Board Supervisor Ken Boyd.
The Board, minus Chairman Dennis Rooker, voted unanimously on Wednesday, June 1, to up their pay by 4.4 percent, going from $12,467 to $13,016 a year. Board members say it's simply something they do every year.
"It's policy that we've followed for years is to raise the boards salary in conjunction with the amount that's been given to classified employees," said Boyd.
However, Gary Grant, who is running for the Rio District Supervisor next term, has problems with the salary increase for a position he says is public service.
"I think they shouldn't be using the supervisor's job as an income stream or as a way to bankroll money for say a re-election campaign," said Grant.
Grant even brought each supervisor a bag of groceries. He says as a charitable gesture, since they feel they need a raise. Members found the food a bit over the top.
"I thought it was very theatrical," said Boyd.
The board is now made up of two lawyers, two businessmen, a civil engineer and a former administrator. Grant believes they should not even be salaried.
"Let's work for the people on a stipend basis, not on a salary basis, and certainly not you raising your own salaries," he added.
Still, county supervisors believe they made the right decision raising their salary again this year.
"I actually think it's very important to do it each year, because otherwise the stipend can get way behind and you'll just have a large increase," said board member Sally Thomas.
The raise is set to go into effect July 1.