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Members of the County Commission voted Monday evening to approve funding a wage study to help put together a possible pay scale for county employees.

By a 13-3 margin, commissioners approved up to $20,000 in funding for the study. The money will come from a local government grant received through the federal CARES Act.

“This is something we’ve talked about and had a lot of discussion last year at budget time,” said Chairman Dwight Jewell. “Everyone wanted to know how we stand in line with others.”

The company putting the study together will create job descriptions for each position in all county departments, and put together a proposed pay scale based on how Trousdale compares to similar-sized jurisdictions in Tennessee.

“Going forward, the only decisions the County Commission should make when it comes to employee pay should be cost-of-living adjustments,” added County Mayor Stephen Chambers.

Jewell stated that the results of the study and proposed pay scale would be subject to Commission approval before taking effect.

“(This) is so we have some hard numbers to make those decisions,” he said.

Commissioners Gary Claridy, Ken Buckmaster and Steve Whittaker voted against funding the study, while Jerry Ford abstained. Richard Johnson, Rachel Jones and Lonnie Taylor were not present at Monday’s meeting.

A number of other budget amendments were approved Monday, all of which were internal transfers of funds already allocated:

  • $4,500 from the Animal Shelter reserve fund for a new HVAC unit;
  • $5,925 in reimbursements for the coroner/medical examiner for autopsies performed;
  • $7,132 in grant funding for the election office;
  • $7,421 in insurance recoveries for the Sheriff’s Department;
  • $5,000 in grant funding from the Tennessee Downtown program;
  • $22,030 to move per diem funds into equipment for the Rescue Squad;
  • $45,000 to purchase upgraded radios for emergency management;
  • $43,170 to move per diem funds into equipment for the Fire Department; and
  • $117,196 in contributions from the school system to make the first payment on the new roof at Jim Satterfield Middle School.

Commissioners approved extending the county’s COVID-19 sick leave policy, which allows for up to 10 paid days for employees who test positive or are having to quarantine because of potential exposure.

The Commission also allowed jail guards to carry over unused vacation from 2020, with those employees required to use the time by the end of April.

Other resolutions approved Monday allow the county to apply for a 2021 Community Development Block Grant of up to $630,000 that would be used for sewer improvements, designating the Chamber of Commerce as the county’s official tourist organization and accepting Lecornu Lane as the name of a private drive.

Four rezoning requests will be voted upon, three on second reading. The first changes property on Halltown Road from R-1 to R-2; the second on Highway 231S from A-1 to R-1; and the third on Hayes Avenue from C-2 to R-3. The fourth request would change a lot on Andrews Avenue from R-1 to R-2, and will come back for a public hearing and second vote in February.

Several appointments were also approved Monday:

  • Bobby Joe Lewis for a four-year term on the Beer Board;
  • Fr

eida Cornwell, Jerry Ford, Landon Gulley and William

  • Beasley to two-year terms on the Board of Agriculture;
  • Mark Harper and Dwight Jewell to four-year terms on the Board of Zoning Appeals;
  • Kathy Atwood to a four-year term as the county’s Health Officer;
  • Bobby Joe Lewis to two years on the Highway Commission;
  • David Nollner to four years on the Planning Commission;
  • Craig Moreland to a four-year term on the Water Board;
  • Jerry Ford, John Oliver and Mark Presley to a Scoring Committee for the Tennessee Downtow
  • n Grant; and
  • Ethan Boles as the student representative to the County Commission.

Three notaries were also approved: Cecilia Stricker, Ryan Chasse and Pamela Scott.

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.

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