County: Raises win over concessions

At least three legislators got it right last week.

John Runkle, R-Stockton; Bob Scudder, R-Fredonia; and Terry Niebel, R-Sheridan; voted against the more than 8 percent pay hike contract for the Chautauqua County sheriff’s deputies over four years during the County Legislature meeting last week. Ironically, the pay raises came at the same meeting the County Home sale was approved because of the fact the county can no longer afford to run the facility due to pay and benefits being 67 percent of the expense line for the facility.

“We’re trying to do everything we can and keep the expense to the taxpayer at the absolute lowest point possible, while at the same time being fair to our employees out there serving the community in law enforcement,” said Vince Horrigan, county executive. “It was fairly negotiated, and it’s in the best interest of the county to have a (new) contract.”

In the meantime, County Home workers who signed a petition to accept concessions to keep the facility in the public sector were ignored.

If the county could not afford concessions from Home workers, how could it accept a more than 8 percent pay hike for deputies? Twelve legislators who voted to sell the Home, voted for the new contract.

That does not make any sense.