ANGOLA — Some Steuben County employees didn’t receive pay raises in the coming 2020 budget, which had at least a couple members of the Steuben County Council question it.
There were seven Steuben County Jail confinement officers who didn’t get raises.
That’s because their longevity with the Sheriff’s Department had them at rates above the wages the council set as the base for confinement officers, said Sheriff R.J. Robinson.
“If there is a possibility, I’d appreciate you bringing (all salaries) up,” Robinson said, somewhat jokingly. The Council did not alter the salary ordinance.
While Robinson said the seven weren’t getting raises, he noted that hopefully due to greater retention of confinement officers because of the higher pay he won’t have to deny vacation requests or force people into working extra shifts. It is also expected that overtime costs will be reduced with a full or nearly full staff.
The council on Tuesday approved the salary ordinance that’s part of a 2020 budget that not only brings the sheriff’s department’s pay in line with surrounding counties, but increases pay for most all county employees. The same held true for confinement officers.
If the county’s budget survives the cutting arm of the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance, deputies will all be paid a base wage of $50,000, which is up from the current $38,700. Officers can receive additional pay based on their rank and special training they have achieved.
Council members and Steuben County Board of Commissioners members have been working for years to bring up pay, for all county employees, but especially the sheriff’s department that has often served as a training ground for other departments. Because of pay, deputies would go through their necessary training then quickly find positions with other neighboring police departments.
Confinement officers will see their base salary increase to $37,000 from the current $31,858. Extra pay will be added for rank and training.
The increases bring Steuben County in line with other counties.
With approval of the salary ordinance, most all other full-time county employees received $4,000 raises. Each of the elected officials received $4,000 raises, with the exception of commissioners, who received $1,000 apiece, and council members, who did not get raises. Chief deputies in all offices received $4,000.