Emergency transfers approved by council
A number of emergency transfers were approved by the Pulaski County Council after several errors were caught at the end of the year.
Auditor Shelia Garling requested that the county council approve emergency transfers for the year end and revise the salary and wage ordinance. She said mistakes were found regarding the salary and wages.
The council previously gave Garling permission to take care of the emergency transfers. Those transfers include items such as employee overtime, equipment repair, miscellaneous services, Social Security and the Public Employee Retirement Fund. The transfers total $4,156.45.
She said she only transfered what was necessary.
In regards to the revised ordinance for salaries and wages for 2015, Garling said the auditor and treasurer revision of 1 cent was missed while the hourly rate for the emergency management agency director was calculated wrong. Although the rate was incorrect the right amount of money was budgeted for the year.
The salary rate change for the probation department was due to a state mandate. The increase wasn’t calculated when the ordinance was established.
“They will be coming to you again because she didn’t ask for enough money when it was figured. I’m thinking that it is off about $300,” Garling said.
Garling said the change to a recycling/transfer station employee hourly rate was wrong because it was budgeted wrong. A new position was asked for and the hourly rate for the position was less than what the employee would make.
“It means that this gentleman here took a cut in pay,” Garling said.
Along with the changes, an hourly rate was allotted to the part-time dispatcher position. Garling said the part-time dispatcher position was not on the justice center salary ordinance. She said money is in the budget for the position.
Her requests were approved by the council.
During the meeting, council members were reminded and made comments that each department must stay within that budget for the year.
President Jay Sullivan told sheriff Jeff Richwine that the budget this year is tight.
“One thing that we are going to have to really watch this year is the budgeted amount of money for the labor,” he said. “We talk about it every year, but this year we really have to.”
Richwine said he plans to stay within the budget and he wants to work with the council.
Sullivan said he wasn’t picking on the sheriff’s office but all departments must stay within budget.
In other business:
• An election of officers was held. Jay Sullivan was re-elected as the president, while Roger Querry was elected as secretary.
• Prosecutor Daniel Murphy approached the council with three different items. Murphy requested for the council to approve a resolution consenting to him being a full-time prosecutor. He also asked to transfer $6,000 to be used in the pretrial diversion fund. The final action he requested for the council to take was to approve an additional appropriation in the amount of $2,413.52 from a nonreverting fund to an equipment line item. The three items Murphy presented to the council were approved.
• A request was made by sheriff Jeff Richwine to release detective Chris Schramm and chief deputy Barney Rausch from the 90-precent wage reduction. According to the county policy, all new hires only receive 90 percent of their wages until after a probationary period of 630 hours. Both have numerous years of experience as officers. The difference is about $2. The request to waive the wage reduction was denied by the council. Council members said they did not want to make an exception to the policy because then others would want the same deviance from policy.
• Richwine informed the council that he has several of the employees “back on a time clock.” He understood that was a concern, so he wanted to implement a time clock.
• Richwine also requested officer Fred Rogers to be moved from chief deputy to sergeant. The change in title is not because of demotion but because he was the chief deputy under sheriff Mike Gayer. The change in title will also cause a decrease in Rogers’ pay. The request was approved.
• Richwine requested that the salary for the head cook be revised. The head cook salary was decreased in the 2015 salary ordinance because it was thought that Leesa Gayer would quit when former sheriff Mike Gayer finished his two terms in December. Richwine said Leesa decided she would stay. “She does do an excellent job. She always gets glowing reports from the jail inspections and the health department. It is a clean, well-run kitchen.” The request to retain Leesa at the same hourly rate as she was before with the hourly adjustments made this year was approved.
• A request by Richwine to transfer $6,000 from gas and oil to the part-time deputy line item was approved. Richwine said the department is at full staff but four of the deputies will have to attend academy training. The department will use a part-time deputy to help cover the hours that the deputies are training. Richwine said money is being saved because the deputies have not been given their vehicles.
• He also requested that $4,500 be transfered within the County Adjusted Gross Income Tax (CAGIT) to help cover any overtime that might occur for the dispatchers. Richwine said it’s an accounting issue. Council members approved the request.
• A transfer of $160 in the airport budget was approved. Garling said the transfer is necessary to cover the cost of the fuel excise tax.
• A request to transfer $120 within the probation fund to cover the costs of Social Security was approved.
• The additional appropriation ordinance regarding the 90-day funding in the amount of $52,596 for the county home was approved. The plan to close the county home is still on task.
• Garling requested to advertise additional appropriations in the amount of $31,740. The funding for the appropriation will come from the CAGIT fund.
• An appropriation of $2,800 to cover elected officials conference and training fees was approved. Garling said a line item must be appropriated but it doesn’t need to be approved by the state.
• An ordinance for weapons to be given to retired sheriff’s deputies after 20 years of service was approved.
• The joint session schedule for 2015 was presented to the council.
• Minutes from the joint session and the regular session on Dec. 8 were approved as amended.
• Appointments for the 2015 year were approved with the change that councilwoman Linda Powers will replace Sullivan on the Americans with Disabilities Act compliance committee.