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Augusta Commission denies salary supplements for sheriff, state court solicitor

Monday, Feb. 11, 2013 6:52 PM
Last updated Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013 1:29 AM
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The salaries for Richmond County’s new sheriff and state court solicitor won’t be any higher after the Augusta Commission denied increases for both elected officials following a nearly two-hour closed legal meeting Monday.

The salary supplements for Sheriff Richard Roundtree and Solicitor General Kellie Kenner-McIntyre failed 5-4 in separate votes. Commissioners Mary Davis, Joe Jackson, Donnie Smith and Wayne Guilfoyle voted against the increases. Six votes are needed to pass a measure.

Commissioner Grady Smith was absent from the legal session and subsequent committee meetings that lasted more than five hours.

Commissioner Alvin Mason said Roundtree should receive supplemental income because he holds a Masters degree and training from the FBI Academy.

“I didn’t vote for a raise. What I voted for was to be properly compensated for qualifications and experience that is brought to the table by the two individuals,” Mason said.

The proposed supplements were $16,500 for Roundtree and $9,700 for McIntyre. The sheriff’s salary is $110,000 and the solicitor’s $97,000.

“There are guidelines showing that for your qualifications and so forth you are entitled to this and the government can provide certain supplements for you,” said Commissioner Bill Lockett about state formulas that determine salaries for elected officials. “This is what we wanted to do but we didn’t get the votes to do it.”

In committee meetings, commissioners voted to allow City Administrator Fred Russell two weeks to contact two management companies that previously submitted proposals for the Augusta Municipal Golf Course, known as the Patch. The vote also permitted operations at the course to continue while Russell determines if the companies are still interested.

A Virginia Beach management company that was selected to lease the city-owned course withdrew its bid last week.

During a lengthy discussion on the course, several commissioners including Marion Williams, Corey Johnson and Alvin Mason said closing the course is not an option despite it operating in the red. They pointed out that both the Augusta Aquatics Center and Newman Tennis Center routinely lose money.

“If we don’t want to be in the golfing business, we can turn it over to a management company,” Johnson said. “But closing it is not going to look good on us at all.”

Committees also approved the following items:

-the 2013 operating plan for the Augusta Convention Center

-an ordinance amending a policy for the naming and renaming of city-owned buildings and properties.

Comments (37) Add comment
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Austin Rhodes
2970
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Austin Rhodes 02/11/13 - 07:23 pm
25
5
Called that one...

...and Alvin...I really do not have a problem with honest disagreement...and if that is the way you feel, God bless you. HOWEVER...if that is not the epitome of a Left Winger...a CERTIFICATE on the WALL makes you more valuable than the 35 year veteran you replace...even though NO DIPLOMA is required AT ALL.

Seriously laughable.

Austin Rhodes
2970
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Austin Rhodes 02/11/13 - 07:29 pm
23
4
...oh...what what was the "excuse"...

...for giving McIntyre a big raise? If experience is supposed to stand for something, perhaps she can tell us why she poop-canned one of the best employees the solicitor's office ever had in Royce Patch Smith. She was loved and adored by Bo Hunter, Sheryl Jolley, Harold Jones, and Chuck Evans...BUT...she wasn't good enough for Mrs. McIntyre.

Nice to know the die has been cast for removing folks at a whim, even though they have spotless employment records. McIntyre had the legal authority, but NOT the ethical and moral authority to make such a hideous move.

justputtin
1495
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justputtin 02/11/13 - 08:03 pm
7
1
Logic prevails but.....Come on Grady

They need you in there. I'm sure you would have voted against these ridiculous raise requests but you weren't there and it was 5 to 4. I understand you have health issues. If that's the case, stand down. I wish you a full recovery. The city needs you.

Riverman1
90139
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Riverman1 02/11/13 - 08:08 pm
8
3
Grady not being there was a

Grady not being there was a good thing for those opposed to the raises. I believe Copenhaver would have gone along with the black Commissioners with a 5-5 tie.

Austin Rhodes
2970
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Austin Rhodes 02/11/13 - 08:10 pm
11
2
Riverman1
90139
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Riverman1 02/11/13 - 08:11 pm
4
3
Transition of the county is

Transition of the county is not without speed bumps. Now with the abstentionist form of government taking over, NOTHING is going to be funded. Until we get past this stage it's going to be uncomfortable.

Riverman1
90139
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Riverman1 02/11/13 - 08:13 pm
5
5
Austin said, "...that was the

Austin said, "...that was the plan."

So you think Deke was going the OTHER way too?

Austin Rhodes
2970
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Austin Rhodes 02/11/13 - 08:16 pm
11
3
No idea...

...I did not ask him because I knew he would never get off the bench.

Riverman1
90139
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Riverman1 02/11/13 - 08:52 pm
9
6
The Abstention Plan Was Ready

From Austin's insider comments, apparently the other white Commissioners thought Deke would vote for the raises or there wouldn't have been plans to have someone else abstain if Grady had showed up.

Deke came out pretty well with the blacks thinking he would have gone along with them and the white voters not angered because he actually did not have to go along with the raises.

cz
35
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cz 02/11/13 - 08:57 pm
14
2
He ran for office and knew the pay when he ran

How can any one expect a pay raise when they ran for office and knew the pay before they ran? He has not done anything to earn a pay raise!!! You can't go to a factory and work 3 or 4 weeks and ask for a raise. They should have laughed him back to his job site and told him to get to work .

myfather15
55819
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myfather15 02/11/13 - 09:07 pm
17
4
Fantastic, now Sheriff; shut

Fantastic, now Sheriff; shut up and get to work EARNING your next raise!!

Darby
28257
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Darby 02/11/13 - 09:08 pm
13
3
"So you think Deke was going the OTHER way too?"

What I think is that Hizzoner doesn't have a backbone...

itsanotherday1
46695
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itsanotherday1 02/11/13 - 10:02 pm
8
1
Like I said, it is a sorry

Like I said, it is a sorry game that two can't play. Kudos to the "other" side for playing the same game one particular group has been playing for years.

Now, with these positions being elective, there should be a policy in place to ensure they are competitive on base. If not, adjust the base and annual COLA appropriately for the NEXT election cycle. I fthese two win, they get the increases.

In the meantime, it is appropriate to fairly evaluate performance and award annual increases.

Like everyone else, I personally take issue with someone running for an office and then asking for more money as soon as they are elected. That stinks to high heavans.

Dare I call it an entitlement mentality? We are eaten up with it nationwide and will be the downfall of this great Democracy.

justputtin
1495
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justputtin 02/11/13 - 10:42 pm
5
1
I was wrong

Ok, obviously I don't understand completely the tactics and posturing when it comes to taking sides and voting. I come from the simplistic idea of voting and counting. Simple as that. If that was by design then I owe Grady Smith an apology. Glad it didn't pass. I used the word "entitlement" in an earlier post and then to see it in this article was amusing.

griff6035
4214
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griff6035 02/11/13 - 10:46 pm
6
1
Masters Degree

From what University, and where did the Bachelor's Degree originate.

I'm Back Again
307
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I'm Back Again 02/11/13 - 11:01 pm
0
0
Just wondering why Al Mason
Unpublished

Just wondering why Al Mason and his cronies didnt ask for a raise for Sheriff Strength? Obviously he was making $127k per year, but that's because he's worked there for 40 years so all of his small raises took him to $127k. Now that a black sheriff is in office all the sudden the black commissioners feel that Roundtree deserves a raise, not based on merit, but a formula.
A month ago Ronnie was sheriff and noone was trying to get him anything extra for doing the same thing Roundtree is doing. And the same responsibilities... And the same number of employees... Sounds like a little favoritism to me.
And before anyone trumps the race card, kiss it! I know Roundtree and Im glad he is the sheriff. I do believe he's making at least double what he was 2 months ago.

Austin Rhodes
2970
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Austin Rhodes 02/11/13 - 11:47 pm
7
2
Tree went to SC State for undergrad...

...and his Masters is from Troy State here in Augusta. There is NO automatic salary bump for education expansion at the RCSD. It does help you get promoted through the ranks, but there is no automatic bump, and rightfully so.

BTW...Grady was out for illness...had he been there, I was told there would have been an abstention...there was no way this was going through.

specsta
6709
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specsta 02/12/13 - 02:14 am
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11
Solicitor General McIntyre

Austin Rhodes wrote - "McIntyre had the legal authority, but NOT the ethical and moral authority to make such a hideous move."

I'm not sure what the qualifications are for "ethical or moral authority", but since Solicitor McIntyre had the LEGAL authority to organize her department as she sees fit, your comment is a moot point.

The Solicitor has the right to employ those individuals whom she believes will help her department achieve success, and it is not our place to second-guess her.

ColCo
905
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ColCo 02/12/13 - 06:36 am
11
2
Why a raise?

The article mentions Roundtree's qualifications that allegedly justify a raise but there is no mention of why McIntyre deserves a raise. The entitlement mentality that is rampant throughout Richmond county will be it's downfall. I hope it stops at the county line and not our country's borders.

Jane18
12332
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Jane18 02/12/13 - 07:04 am
6
3
Corey Johnson

Soooooooo, just continue to "throw good money after bad", is that what you are saying? No wonder Augusta is going down the tubes! Oh yeah, Alvin Mason, does the sheriff appreciate you "tooting his horn" about his degree and training, and you wanting him to have More Money?He sure has a "friend" in you................

bclicious
756
Points
bclicious 02/12/13 - 07:28 am
8
1
Dam Right!

How are you gonna be in office for 2 months and ask for a raise? How about trying to get your deputies a dam raise, and keep them from having to work an extra 20-36 hours a week at specials just to make ends meet!

chascushman
6653
Points
chascushman 02/12/13 - 07:28 am
7
4
ColCo, entitlement mentality
Unpublished

“The entitlement mentality that is rampant throughout Richmond county will be it's downfall. I hope it stops at the county line and not our country's borders.”
Just look at what is running this country and it obvious the entitlement mentality has taken over.

Little Lamb
47854
Points
Little Lamb 02/12/13 - 07:47 am
8
1
Scarecrow

Austin Rhodes has it right when he picks apart Alvin Mason's ludicrous statement with this analysis:

. . . a CERTIFICATE on the WALL makes you more valuable than the 35 year veteran you replace...even though NO DIPLOMA is required AT ALL. Seriously laughable.

It would be laughable, if I could stop crying about Augusta's waste of my tax money.

The certificate on the wall thing reminded me of The Wizard of Oz where the wiz granted a diploma to Scarecrow and he magically became smarter. I guess we'll just have to start calling Richard (Shaft) Roundtree Scarecrow from now on.

Riverman1
90139
Points
Riverman1 02/12/13 - 08:28 am
2
1
Doesn't the position of Fire

Doesn't the position of Fire Chief for Richmond County REQUIRE a degree?

JRC2024
9916
Points
JRC2024 02/12/13 - 08:36 am
6
1
Smarter heads prevailed in

Smarter heads prevailed in this one. As the two officers on here said, the rank and file need the additional money. The sheriffs pay is good and if he cannot live on $9166.66 per month then he has a spending problem.

GnipGnop
12692
Points
GnipGnop 02/12/13 - 08:43 am
6
2
Curious specsta....

"The Solicitor has the right to employ those individuals whom she believes will help her department achieve success, and it is not our place to second-guess her."
What if the solicitor was white and the employee let go was black? Do you think Marion (abstention) Williams and Alvin(no show) Mason would have just let that slide? Not from past experience they wouldn't. The commissioners are clowns and Augusta is a circus...

JRC2024
9916
Points
JRC2024 02/12/13 - 08:56 am
4
1
GnipGnop, you can bet there

GnipGnop, you can bet there would be fire breathing if that happened.

MrsNewsome
43
Points
MrsNewsome 02/12/13 - 09:29 am
5
2
not our place to second guess ??? huh?

specsta you say say
"The Solicitor has the right to employ those individuals whom she believes will help her department achieve success, and it is not our place to second-guess her."
Actually it is the place of citizens to "second guess" the decisions of elected officials and hold them accountable for discriminatory behavior and practices. I am actually afraid to live in a society that doesn't "second guess" its government. An exemplary employee like Royce with a 25+ year working history could have been moved to another department or transferred. To be fired at a whim should not be legal. Why is this not being talked about more or examined?

PS Richmond County just gonna keep losing qualified assets like her to work in Columbia County where they have their stuff together.... keep em comin

justthefacts
23737
Points
justthefacts 02/12/13 - 09:24 am
5
1
MrsNewman

You know you can trust the government. Ask an Indian.

Dudeness
1546
Points
Dudeness 02/12/13 - 10:35 am
3
1
Troy University in Augusta

Troy University in Augusta will practically sell diplomas/degrees to you. Calling them a diploma mill may be generous. They're more like the gift shop that you pass through as you exit a museum.

I would place a far greater emphasis on experience when it comes to the role of Sheriff than on scholarly "achievements".

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