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MEETING DATE CORRECTED: County board to review pay, per diem

By Tom Larson

Sun Tribune

The Stevens County Board of Commissioners will elect a new chairman for 2009, and will honor its retiring chairman, at its regular meeting Wednesday.

The board meets at 9 a.m. in the Stevens County Courthouse.

Among their reorganizational chores, the commissioners will set pay for elected officials for 2009, and after the meeting they will host a reception for retiring board member Neal Hofland.

Currently, commissioners are paid $16,298 per year and receive a $60 per day per diem when conducting county business.

The board will vote on salaries and the per diem rate for 2009.

The commissioners also are all appointed to serve on 22 committees, and one or two commissioners are assigned to another 40 committees with connections to county governance, such as the Stevens County Economic Improvement Commission, Rainbow Rider and Prime West.

The assignments typically are rolled over from one year to the next, but some shifts could take place with Ron Staples succeeding Hofland as District 3 commissioner.

The board also will establish pay for elected officials. In 2008, Auditor/Treasurer Neil Weise was paid $68,250, Sheriff Randy Willis was paid $68,705, Recorder Virginia Mahoney was paid $67,927, and County Attorney Charles Glasrud was paid $103,621.

Willis could receive an addition $8,471 for working as the county's Emergency Management Director.

Glasrud's office also has asked to forfeit additional health insurance and associated benefits for 2009 and have that money instead allocated for part-time secretarial work.

The board also will vote on a resolution establishing compensation for appointed officials and non-union and supervisory positions.

In other board business:

• The county will consider a resolution to approve a special benefit levy for the Stevens County Housing and Redevelopment Authority.

The levy can be used to pay certain administrative costs of the HRA.

According to state statute, the county can collect a special benefit tax of 0.0185 percent of the taxable market value of all real estate in the county.

The county HRA is seeking $140,000 through the levy, which doesn't exceed the 0.0185 percentage.

The county also will be asked to approve the HRA's 2009 budget.

• The board will review a summary of changes to the AFSCME union contract agreed to by the parties.