The Long County Commission Tuesday adopted the employee compensation and classification study establishing job descriptions and pay schedules for all county employees. Implementing the plan will cost about $106,000 during this fiscal year.
The $106,000 price tag on the personnel system is lower than what officials budgeted for the project. The personnel plan is based on an exhaustive study conducted by the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government beginning in February. Commissioners, employees and officials have been discussing the proposal since August and adjustments have been made based on feedback. New pay rates will go into effect for the next pay period.
The 29-page report from the Carl Vinson Institute of Government showed how all county employees can be classified and compensated with appropriate pay. The institute surveyed each county job and interviewed employees about their positions. Local and regional pay scales are used to set a range of employee pay.
Annual salaries proposed for county workers start at $20,302 and top out at $72,633. Elected officials, temporary part time employees and contract employees are not included.
After a closed-door session regarding property acquisition, commissioners re-entered open session. At that time, they voted unanimously to commit .25 mills of 2019 tax revenue to the Long County Development Authority. The quarter-mill allocation will come from the county’s budget and does not represent a millage increase. Authority Chairman Danny Norman and executive Chuck Scragg discussed plans with the commissioners and presented a slide show.
A slogan for possible use on a billboard was unveiled: You beLONG here. Scragg said the authority’s message was, “Come live, work and play here.”
The commissioners favored allowing the city of Ludowici to nominate an authority board member after Norman emphasized the importance of Long County’s only municipality. The law establishing the authority gives the county commission the power to name all board members.
Norman said the authority has a fair number of prospects for businesses interested in Long County, but, “We’re not going to get a Toyota plant.”
Commissioner Mike Riddle said, “Whatever we have been doing in the past has not worked,” in attracting prospects.
Finance chief Bernice Johnson gave the monthly report and told commissioners about difficulties and delays in completing the annual CPA audit required by state law.
Johnson said the county’s audit firm had lost a key employee and then undergone corporate changes in which the firm of Maulden and Jenkins took over the county’s audit after acquiring KRT CPAs. The commission had engaged KRT to do its audit. “With Maulden and Jenkins everything is totally different,” she said.
Local governments in Georgia have 180 days after the close of their fiscal year to submit annual audits to the state. Long County uses the January-December calendar year as its fiscal year.
After Johnson’s report the commissioners voted to seek an extension of time for submitting their audit. Governments that do not submit timely audits – and plans of correction, if required – can face loss of state funding.
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