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Compensation Board recommends 3.5 percent raises

The Humboldt County Compensation Board is a seven-member public body charged with recommending salaries for the county's 10 elected public officials. Pictured is board chair Lonnie Larson (left) and vice-chair Romaine Lee (right).

Not going along with the crowd, but making a concerted effort to reward public employees and departments they believe are doing a good job, the Humboldt County Compensation Board met last week and recommended raises of 3.5 percent for 10 county officials.
The Compensation Board is comprised of seven members: Roger Day representing the county treasurer, Ray Fisher representing the county recorder, Romaine Lee representing the county auditor, Corey Matson and Larry Lane representing the county supervisors, Lonnie Larson representing the county sheriff and Ashley Emick representing the county attorney.
The board reviewed the salaries for corresponding officeholders in the nine counties surrounding Humboldt.
Humboldt County supervisors ranked nearly $1,600 below the average salary for the nine counties. Four counties had three supervisors and five had five board members, like Humboldt.
The county attorney’s salary was about $4,000 above the average, but some of those counties had assistant county attorneys and some county’s had only part-time county attorneys, skewing the average.
The county auditor, recorder and treasurer were more than $2,000 below the average for the eight surrounding counties.
The county sheriff was likewise, nearly $2,000 below the average for the surrounding counties.
In light of the fact of the lower average salaries among neighboring counties and counties of like size, Board member Corey Mattson recommended a 3.5 percent salary increase for the elected officials reviewed.
The board unanimously agreed by a 7-0 vote, and appointed Larson and Lee to present the recommendation to the board of supervisors.
The supervisors will have a final decision on salaries when they compile the fiscal 2014 budget.