Hancock County is voting on its 2021-2022 fiscal year budget Monday, which includes 4 to 5 percent salary increases – 4 percent for all elected officials with the exception of the auditor who would receive a 5 percent raise. These figures were recommended by the compensation board in January. Board Chairman Dan Kadrlik explains the recommendations.
This was Kadrlik’s final year on the Hancock County Compensation Board after 15 years of service. The Hancock County Supervisors can vote on Monday to approve said raises, decrease them, or decline them.
For the last 3 consecutive years, Hancock County elected officials have averaged a 4.17 percent increase each year, with the exception of the Supervisors who have averaged a 2.67 percent increase each year. In comparison, the cost of living increase in 2019 was 2.8%, and in 2020, only 1.2%.
Currently, Hancock County ranks 69th out of 99 counties in population ranking, but its total elected official salaries rank in the top 27 of 99 counties, so their salaries are sitting well above average for counties of similar populations and many even larger.
Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic still continuing to plague and many experiencing its resulting economic hardships, the question arose are the county taxpayers getting raises at their jobs. Social Security checks are only expected to increase 1.3 percent, and for those employed, 4-5 percent increases are seemingly unrealistic. Local businesses did not wish to go on record in regards to wage increases, so KIOW conducted an anonymous poll raising the question “Area county elected officials are voting on raises averaging 4 percent, have you recently received a raise at your job, and if so, how much?”
From our KIOW news poll, 74 percent of respondents have not received a raise lately and 7 percent of those have never received a raise at their job. Only 26 percent of respondents have actually received a raise in recent months, with only 2-4 percent getting a raise commensurate to county officials’ proposed pay raises.
The public hearing on the proposed 2021-2022 fiscal year budget will be held Monday, March 8th at 9:15am in the Hancock County Board of Supervisors chambers. Members of the public are invited to attend in person or online via go to meetings.