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Allegany County Legislature passes pay raise resolutions

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County Sheriff pay also increased to correct a “typo”

By Andrew Harris

The debate over providing county employees a substantial pay increase ended with approval from the full board of Legislators.

Three votes took place during public session on Wednesday November 2: The first was to approve salary increases for almost two dozen department heads, directors, and deputies. Legislator John Ricci, who has consistently spoke out against the plan to increase salaries, noted to the board that while he approves of paying county employees a more competitive wage, he will still vote no due to a matter of process. Ricci explained that the timeline to analyze and approve the increases was hurried and needed more due diligence. Legislator Gary Barnes and Legislator James Rumfelt both also voted no.

The second vote was to amend the pay rate of the Allegany County Sheriff. According to Legislator Brooke Harris, a “typo,” needed to be corrected on the resolution. That mistake equated to a quick $6400 raise for the new Sheriff of the county, current Undersheriff Scott Cicirello, who is running for the office unopposed. The only dissenting vote was Legislator Gary Barnes.

A final resolution before the full board provided non-union county employees with a pay raise. This pay increase covers the employees who do not have union contracts in place. That resolution passed easily, with “No” votes coming from Legislators Barnes, Ricci, and Rumfelt.

Legislator Adam Cyr, who originally opposed the resolution to increase pay, indicated that his vote changed to a yes and explaned why.

“I think that this is going open the door wide open for new negotiations for public works and public safety employees(unionized) to paid a fair working wage. This will be a great opportunity.”

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