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By reducing one deputy, County hopes to attract more deputies
In an effort to recruit additional deputies, McCreary County Fiscal Court voted unanimously during their regular February meeting (February 9, 2023) to eliminate one sheriff’s deputy paid by the Fiscal Court in order to use that funding to increase current deputies’ base pay rate to $15.00 per hour. The action to raise the base pay of McCreary County deputies was taken to make McCreary County deputy salaries more competitive with those of surrounding counties. By making the pay more competitive, Fiscal Court members feel experienced deputies who are already academy trained will be easier to recruit to work in McCreary County. Instead of paying the base salary for six deputies, Fiscal Court will now pay the base salary for five deputies. Currently, there are two paid deputies, Chief Deputy Dustin Ridner and Deputy Greg Chaney. In order to be paid, deputies must meet certain requirements. After meeting initial requirements, the deputies must then complete the police academy within one year. McCreary County Sheriff David Sampson said he is confident Fiscal Court will be able to hire experienced, academy trained deputies now that the base pay is competitive with the surrounding area.
In additional business, the Fiscal Court:
- Approved the appointment of Trevor Tucker (replacing Chad Starrett) and re-appointments of Sam Strunk, Bill Hale, and Bill Taylor to the McCreary County Park Board.
- Approved 2022 Tax Settlement and 2022 Fee Settlement for Randy Waters, previous sheriff.
- Accepted Eric Haynes’, County Clerk, submission of 90% excess fees.
- Approved quote regarding purchase of new voting machines and software.
- Approved a resolution requested by EMS Director Jimmy Barnett who is applying for another ambulance. (grant)
- Approved a list of surplus items, including two old cruisers with missing parts.
- Approved an agreement with Backroads of Appalachia to lease a hangar at the airport.
- Heard citizen’s participation from Erik Hubbard (Backroads of Appalachia) and Whitley City business owner, Cheryl Dunkin.
- Heard from Department Heads, including:
- EMS made 423 runs (42 non-emergency) in January (total amount of revenue in excess of $167,300). 911 answered 857 calls.
- Animal Control Officer Greg Smith discussed tools used by the Animal Control Office.
- Tourism collected approximately $813.74 transient taxes in January. Regional tourism meeting was held in Whitley City.
- County Road & Litter Abatement Supervisor Tony Kidd reported on a busy month which included mowing, culvert and patch work, bus turn-around repairs, etc.
- Alcoholic Beverage Control reported McCreary County merchants took in $211,163.66 during December. The County gained $10,821.20 in taxes/fees.
- County Attorney Austin Price cautioned citizens to be careful about COVID, noting his office has been dealing with the illness.
Deputy Judge Nathan Nevels reported on Outdoor Venture, Teleworks, and the Revolving Loan Program.
The McCreary County Fiscal Court meets regularly on the second Thursday of each month at 6:00 p.m. at the McCreary County Courthouse.