In response to the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors voting to give themselves a 33% pay raise on Nov. 4, the Contra Costa Deputy Sheriff’s Association has created a petition to encourage the Supervisors to reverse their decision.
Under Board Ordinance 2014-10, by way of a 4-1 vote Tuesday, the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors voted to increase their salaries by $32,000 even after unions protested against the decision.
Under the ordinance, each supervisor’s salary will equate to 70 percent of a Contra Costa County Superior Court judge’s pay which is set by the State Legislator. They used a salary study to include: The counties of Alameda, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma.
The Supervisors salary now jumps from $97,483 ($8,123.28 per/mo) to $129,216 ($10,768.92 per/mo) annually—a monthly increase is $2,662.72
Over an 8-year period, the Contra Costa County Supervisors have increased their salaries from $58,200 (2006) to $129,216 (2014).
According to Ken Westermann, President Contra Costa DSA, they have been given a cost of living increase while the Board of Supervisors received 33% increase in pay. In fact, over the same 7-year period the Board of Supervisors used to justify their raise, the Sheriff’s Deputies received an increase of just 6.2%.
“The sheriff’s office has seen an abnormally high attrition rate and have lost 40 sheriffs deputies to neighboring agencies,” said Westermann. “We had lost 42 sheriffs deputies the previous two years. We are the lowest paid and pay the highest in pension costs (13-20% to pension). We are having a hard time retraining our members while the county is now paying a lot of money to train and recruit. We are losing senior officers to BART, San Francisco, Richmond, San Ramon.”
He highlighted how the Board of Supervisors are using the same salary survey they have argued for years to use, however, the Supervisors instead force them to compare salaries to Stanislaus and Humboldt counties.
“I’ve always told the Supervisors, we just want to be in the middle, give us the 50 percentile, we would be happy,” said Westermann. “When you can go to Antioch, San Ramon and on the very first day make $1,000 more a month than a deputy who has been here for 5 years. That is not right. The day a graduate from Richmond Police Department, they makes more than a Sheriff’s Office Sergeant who has been here 20-years.”
Westermann calls the Change.org Petition a symbolic first step and are working to put together a referendum to have the voters have the decision of a raise overturned,
Here is what is stated on Charge.org
Based on a salary survey of their peers in similar urban counties in 2007, the county supervisors voted to give themselves a 60% salary increase. Based on a similar survey in 2014, they again voted to give themselves a 33% salary increase and forever after maintaining their salary at a level equivalent to 70% of a Superior Court judges salary.
Over this same time period by contrast, county employees have consistently requested that their salaries be based on a comparison of their peers in similar urban counties. The county supervisors continually rejected this methodology for determining workers salaries, giving the workers an average pay increase in the neighborhood of 6% over that span. This self-serving abuse of power is the very definition of hypocrisy and has created extreme animosity within the county workforce.
Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors.
Reverse Board Ordinance 2014-10
To view or sign the petition, click here