Anyone mentioned in this post is always welcome to respond in the comment section below or submit an editorial for publication. 

In addition to the special contracts that have been awarded to the County Commissioners’ friends, Clay County taxpayers have additionally spent more than $331,000 on jobs for the friends and political contributors of this County Commission.  The sheriff could have hired 9 additional deputies or the Highway Department could have asphalted 4 additional miles of county roads each year with that money.  Instead of spending taxpayer money on public safety or county roads and bridges, Commissioners are spending public money to pay back their friends.

BRAND NEW POSITIONS:

The County Commission created four brand new positions in 2013 specifically for friends and political contributors. These four positions that are being paid for by Clay County taxpayers have annual salaries totaling more than $151,000 plus benefits.

The Assistant Director at the county airport position that was created for political contributor and former County Treasurer’s (Carol McCaslin) husband, Dale McCaslin, had an annual salary of $52,000 plus benefits.

The Special Assistant to the County Commission position that was created political contributor and friend of the Commission, Steve Hemphill, had an annual salary of $36,500 plus benefits.

The Special Projects Coordinator position that was created for friend of the Commission, Heather Hall, had an annual salary of $36,400 plus benefits

The Assistant Purchasing Agent position that was created for friend of the Commission, Beth Brantley, had a part time annual salary of $27,050 plus benefits

TERMINATION & SETTLEMENT AGREEMENTS:

Clay County taxpayers have paid more than $115,000 in termination agreements and settlement agreements with long time County employees that were fired so that they could be replaced by friends of the Commission.

The Assistant County Administrator was fired and paid a termination agreement costing Clay County taxpayers $60,917. He was replaced by friend of the Commission Steve Wright. His salary annual salary is $94,700 plus benefits.

The Commission’s Secretary was fired and paid a lawsuit settlement agreement costing Clay County taxpayers $50,000. She was replaced by friend of the Commission Pam Cone. Her annual salary is $37,752 plus benefits.

One of the purchasing staff employees was fired and paid a termination agreement costing Clay County taxpayers $4,386.  She was replaced by friend of the Commission Stacey Nickerson. Her annual salary is $31,096 plus benefits.

There are also long term employees that were fired and not paid a termination agreement or settlement agreement, but that is costing Clay County taxpayers because the salaries of the friends of the Commissioners are more than the employees that were replaced.

ATTORNEYS:

The County’s former county counselor team was replaced in 2013. The attorneys that made up the County’s 2013 legal team cost the citizens of Clay County an additional $65,000 in annual salaries than the County’s previous legal team. Political contributor Matt Thompson ($75,000 salary), political contributor Tim Flook ($55,000 salary) and friend of the Commission Don Norris ($60,0000 salary) all receive more than the three county counselors they replaced that each made an annual salary of $41,640.  This doesn’t include the money that has been spent out of the General fund and other special revenue funds on additional, special legal counsel.

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