FLOYD COUNTY — What about us?
Floyd County Sheriff Frank Loop said the more than 100 officers, dispatchers and other employees under his umbrella are asking that question in terms of bonus pay for their essential work during the pandemic.
The reason they’re asking, Loop said this week, is because of the bonus pay approved for the 10 full-time employees of the Floyd County Health Department. Earlier this month, the Floyd County Council and Floyd County Commissioners agreed to provide the health department workers with bonuses totaling $25,000 each over the next three-and-a-half years.
The $250,000 is coming through federal American Relief Plan money awarded to the county, and officials are still deciding how to spend the rest of the funds by the December 2024 deadline. Premium bonus pay for essential workers is one of the allowed expenditures.
Loop doesn’t disagree with paying the health department employees. But he emphasized to the commissioners during a Tuesday meeting that the sheriff’s department also has essential workers who were on the frontlines daily during the pandemic.
“I brought this up last year when you closed this building and paid people to be home — that my people were there every day,” Loop said. “I offered to do something else like comp time and was turned down.”
There was no motion made to consider bonus pay for the sheriff’s department in the meeting, and the council and commissioners aren’t slated to convene again until next month.
The commissioners have to agree to include premium pay into the ARP plan and the council has to OK the appropriation. Last week, Councilman Adam Roberts suggested premium pay for corrections officers and Council President Brad Striegel said he would be open to discussing bonuses for other workers.
During an ARP planning session last week, Councilwoman Denise Konkle said she supports additional pay for county workers who have gone several years without raises.
Commissioner John Schellenberger said the low average pay for the health department employees was one reason they were included for premium pay in the ARP local plan.
“When you look at what they’re making compared to other counties, it’s way less,” he said.