The Herald Got it Wrong

February 8, 2016

While I’ve greatly appreciated the Herald’s endorsement of several county issues the past 3 years, the January 1, 2016 article on county salaries got it wrong.

Setting the record straight:

  • County commissioners can’t set their own salaries. The Colorado State Legislature is responsible for establishing county and state elected officials salaries. No current elected official is eligible for a salary increase. They are eligible only if they are re-elected in 2016 and beyond.
  • The Legislature has not allowed salary increases in 10 years. Senate Bill 2015-288 is the first salary bill to pass since 2006. The established amount reflects what would have been a 3% annual increase over the past 10 years, or a total of 30%.
  • The salary bill affects ALL elected county officials: sheriffs, commissioners, clerks, assessors, treasurers, coroners and surveyors.
  • The process has been transparent. The La Plata Board of County Commissioners held 2 public meetings and a public hearing on this bill, SB 288. All testimony received by us was in support of the bill as written.