Council raises pay for Admin, clerk

WINNSBORO – Fairfield County Council recently approved salary increases for the county administrator and clerk to council, though votes to do so were not unanimous. 

At the Aug. 12 meeting, council members voted 4-2 to increase the pay of County Administrator Jason Taylor by 5 percent. In 2018, Taylor received a 3.44 percent increase.

The council also voted to give Davis a 2 percent raise.

Council members Douglas Pauley and Moses Bell voted against the increases. Councilman Mikel Trapp left the meeting prior to the vote.

There was no discussion after the votes and the meeting adjourned.

Reached by phone this past Monday, Pauley said his nay vote was not a reflection on either Taylor or Davis.

Pauley said they’re both excellent employees, but noted Taylor and Davis already had received a 3 percent cost of living adjustment, or COLA, along with most other county employees in the 2019-2020 budget.

The only exception was the sheriff’s office, whose employees received 6 percent.

“I don’t like that they [Taylor and Davis] were compensated in the COLA raise, and then the council chose to vote for an additional raise,” Pauley said. “Last year we did a merit based system. That’s what I wanted to do this year.”

Taylor’s base pay prior to July 1 was $129,297.52. The combined COLA and merit raises totaling 8 percent translates to $10,343.80, which would elevate Taylor’s pay to $139,641.32.

Taylor’s base pay is slightly below the U.S. median of $142,674 for county administrators, according to a 2019 survey conducted by the International City/County Management Association, or ICMA

The ICMA study found that the median salary rose 2.3 percent from 2018, and that more than 81 percent of county administrators received a merit raise, COLA or combination of both.