Pay raise explained

inyo_county_jail.jpgFor those who questioned the pay raise for Inyo County Sheriff Bill Lutze, we contacted the Sheriff who offered a response.

Sheriff Lutze explained that the Deputy Sheriffs’ Association and the Law Enforcement Administrators Association have received what are called certificates which equal a 5% pay raise upon completion of certain training and education. His officers, through their agreements with Inyo County have received these pay increases and some officers made as much or close to the salary of the Sheriff. The ordinance approved by the Inyo Supervisors raises the Sheriff’s compensation by those raises offered to other officers.

The raise approved took the Sheriff’s monthly salary from $8,559 to $10,699. The last pay raise for the Inyo Sheriff’s position took place in the 90s. Sheriff Lutze said his pay still lags behind a number of small counties. He also noted that he is responsible for roughly 125 employees and volunteers, the Sheriff’s Department, the Jail, Emergency Services, Veterans Services and Animal Control.

Other County Department heads’ salaries with no pay hikes were listed in the agenda item which referred to an ordinance that includes officials’ salaries, but not the pay of the Board of Supervisors.

In that item, A table lists department heads’ monthly salaries as of July 18, 2013. The Assessor – $7,431. The Auditor/Controller – $8,174. The Clerk/Recorder – $6,955. The Coroner – $2,000. The District Attorney – $9,807. The Public Administrator – $5,017. The Sheriff – $10, 699. And, the Treasurer/ Tax Collector – $7,431.

In later news, we will report on current department head salaries in other local governments of the Eastern Sierra.


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41 Responses to Pay raise explained

  1. J-Frog June 12, 2013 at 3:38 pm #

    Thanks for the explanation, I still don’t see a justification in these tough times. It’s not like 100,000 dollars a year is chump change, yes of course 120k is way better, but how is our county any better from the last sheriff? Correct me if I’m wrong. So it is a competition “his pay still lags behind a number of small counties.” so lets see how many minor citations, and minor traffic violations we can give out, “come on boys, the boss needs a raise”

    • Getting what you pay for June 13, 2013 at 5:34 am #

      There will always be people like J-Frog, who have a gigantic problem with ALL government employees, regardless of their position and responsibilities.
      Because they most likely did not see (or flatly ignored) the downturn in the economy, failed to plan accordingly, and now are so enraged that they think the fair thing to do is run their local government on a volunteer basis.
      That should bring out quality personnel and quality service.

      • Mark June 13, 2013 at 10:35 am #

        Getting what you pay for – You should stick to sharing your own thoughts.

        Who are you to say someone has a gigantic problem with anything. Your comment is nothing more then a speculative assumption and has nothing to do with what J-Frog may or may not think.

        Right or wrong, across the Country people are questioning the value they are getting for their tax dollar when it comes to public employees pay.

        • So, how are you contributing, Mark? June 13, 2013 at 1:39 pm #

          I wonder what “Mark” is doing for his country/state/county/town to make it a better place – other than whine about how much public employees earn?

          Lots of Larry Johnston(ism) going around.

          • Mark June 14, 2013 at 12:01 pm #

            Private business owner since 1980. Never been on the public dole in my life.

            I have to run my business in black ink, I can’t just raise taxes when things get tough. I have to make cuts even when there’s no fat to cut. I’m for smaller government across the board.

            I’ve contributed 100’s of thousands of dollars over the years.

            and yes I feel I have nothing in common with some of you other then the love for the Eastern Sierra.

            piss me off and I might lay your family member off.

          • Desert Tortoise June 17, 2013 at 8:01 am #

            Why not Mark? You have probably been cheating their family members out of overtime by calling a gas station attendant a “manager” so you can get out of paying them overtime, or maybe you have taken cash register errors out of their pay, both practices are very illegal but I have spent enough time in business myself to know the crooked games that are played. Maybe you call an employee a “contractor” so you can sleaze out of paying their workers comp and disability insurance, along with your part of their Social Security and Medicare contributions. I have seen that game too.
            Or maybe you bend people over on the fine print, requiring mediation when you know darn well the mediator will always rule in your favor. Or perhaps you have made enough well placed “campaign contributions” in your life to know your interests will be well taken care of at the dais of the Board of Supervisors or the local town council.
            Don’t give us this holier than thou line just because you are in private business. There are more than enough crooks in suits and ties in “private enterprise” to make your crying about the work our public employees do look like sour grapes. No one is getting rich in a wage grade job in public service, and you have to stay at that job for twenty to thirty years to draw that retirement you whine about. People like you will lay off the older experienced worker to avoid that, and will refuse to hire the older worker with decades of experience in favor of a kid they can underpay and abuse. I have seen that one plenty of times too. I’v worked both sides of that street buddy, public and private employee and now I own a business too. You are not fooling anyone here.

          • Benett Kessler June 17, 2013 at 8:23 am #

            Talk about “holier than thou.”

        • J-Frog June 13, 2013 at 2:36 pm #

          Maybe not all Gov’t employees, but anything that continues to prop up these broken systems we have in place, like monetary system, legislative system, judicial system, Or anything that feeds into this “illusion of freedom” We are as free as our purchasing power allows us to be! At least the 2nd amendment is safe, the 1st and 4th are being gutted!
          Yes! I have a Huge ax I have been grinding and I keep cutting my fingers before i can use it..I love this country and the indigenous culture, if you have a better reason not to stand up for that, I’m all ears…

          • You know the type ... June 13, 2013 at 3:48 pm #

            Sounds to me that “J-Frog” has been in the swamp for too long a time. Perhaps, undereducated, did not/is not putting enough rainy-day money away and is now angry and wondering how he/she is going to make ends meet.
            Meanwhile, there are those devoted to public service, worked hard getting Master’s Degrees in Public Administration et. al, have paid attention to what’s happening in America, refuse to listen to the likes of Rush Limbaugh each day, and are making a difference.

          • J-Frog June 14, 2013 at 7:56 am #

            @You Know the type
            We all take so much for granted! We feel “entitled” to such conveneince that we don’t even consider the cost or sustainability. We are wrong! Our way of life is wrong! People don’t want to acknowledge that and some never will. Fact of the matter is, if we don’t align up better with MotherEarths natural order of laws we will CONTINUE to have climate destablization and vital life supporting systems on decline!
            Meanwhile, I’d out work you anyday.

          • Desert Tortoise June 14, 2013 at 5:06 pm #

            J-Frog, move to Darwin and leave productive alone people to prosper.

    • Desert Tortoise June 13, 2013 at 3:21 pm #

      If you don’t offer something resembling competitive pay then good employees leave for places that will pay them better. Living someplace you like only goes so far when you know you can make 30% or 50% more doing the exact same job someplace else. What you end up with offering substandard pay are substandard employees, including people like a sheriff or a city manager. You get the people no one else will hire. You may already have that now. This pay proposal is lower than what the Ridgecrest Police Chief is paid.

  2. upthecreek June 12, 2013 at 8:50 pm #

    govt gone wild.
    just keep spending money you will never have.

    • How to bankrupt a country June 13, 2013 at 10:57 am #

      Where was upthecreek during the nasty Bush/Cheney years where bogus reasons to invade Iraq went unheeded, American lives were lost, and the country is now bankrupted trying to pay for the mess that only made Cheney’s Halliburton and Lockheed Martin defensive contractor pals filthy rich.
      So, where the hell ARE those WMDs that that administration insisted were present?

      • Tourbillon June 13, 2013 at 2:26 pm #

        Maybe if Bush were still President (you may have missed it, but he left office five years ago), the federal debt would still be shy of $12 trillion (FY 09, Bush’s last year), instead of $16 trillion in FY 12 projected to rise another trillion each year for the remainder of the current presidency.

        • J-Frog June 13, 2013 at 2:41 pm #

          Yeah the current presidency has been taking on a lot of BUSH era policy’s and put them on steroids. Have you seen how much we spend on defense? or how much we loose due to tax havens for the mega rich? Yeah thanks to bush and his predecessor obama = Broken Democracy/Republic

          “Congress should be dependent on the people alone” -James Madison-
          Unfortunately in this current platform (right and left), yes they are still dependent on the people for elections, BUT they are first dependent on the DONORS!! = Broken system.

        • Didn't miss a thing June 13, 2013 at 3:39 pm #

          Notice how Tourbillon wants to gloss over those nasty Cheney/Bush years that bankrupted the country and may never recover from.
          I think the country did not miss the fact that this terrible regime left office 5 years ago, Tourbillon.


    • How to bankrupt a country June 17, 2013 at 1:11 pm #

      @upthecreek –

      Are you referring to the Bush/Cheney “Let’s go to war on Iraq and find them WMDs that I know are hidden somewhere while spending money you will never have” debacle?

    • Seriously? June 17, 2013 at 6:55 pm #

      Actually, the county is one of the few counties in CA, or the nation for that matter, who is in the “green”. If we want to speak about giving raises, lets talk about Kevin Carunchio, the County Administrator. Sheriff Lutze has refused raises the entire time he has served our county. Carunchio on the other hand, has given himself a raise on two occasions. Ask him what his raises have been during the next board meeting.

  3. Sean June 12, 2013 at 11:34 pm #

    The average deputy in LA County makes $100k a year with some overtime. $120k for a department head with 125 employees to manage is not unreasonable even is a rural county. I am more interested in why there has been no cost of living adjustments since the 90’s. In private business anyone in charge of that many people is going to make more than $120k. Sounds like he wasn’t paid enough for the last 10 yrs.

    • J-Frog June 13, 2013 at 7:57 am #

      I appreciate the “Serve and Protect” theme a majority of law enforcement uphold. I don’t agree with half of the justice system, I am just a pawn in this world so I understand this is only my opinion and nothing more.
      LA county is way more dangerous then Inyo county. Oh stop with the 125 employee management point because it seems it is “business as usual” or “another day in the office” type mind set (inyo county) with no real progress in anything.
      Sean the no cost of living adjustments is relevant to all of us, those with 100k -120k salaries are better off then what a lot of us receive, Like Teachers, Teachers deserve a raise! Food service, those who serve us food, make it, grow it etc. they deserve a raise! Carpenters, Plumbers, Receptionists, those who have to deal with people (in a non authority position) deserve a raise.
      I am not convinced from your justification of the Inyo county sheriff pay raise.

      • foodforthought June 13, 2013 at 12:07 pm #

        Just playing devils advocate and wanted to bring up a point. Sure Inyo county is a lot “safer” than LA County. But we still have murders, rapes, burglaries, and more domestic violence and alcohol related calls for service than you could possibly imagine. LA county has 20+ Deputies on per shift…Inyo 1 maybe 2 if you’re lucky. Sometimes there is ONE person on from the Sherwin grade to Pearsonville. Give them some credit.
        I know times are tough but think of it this way. Folks are retiring all the time…no raises = no one wants to work here. They must stay competitive to attract good cops.

        • Where they get it from June 13, 2013 at 2:02 pm #

          On his radio show, Conservative kingpin Rush Limbaugh said that police and firefighters are nice to have, but they take away from private sector jobs and contribute nothing to the economy.

          • Desert Tortoise June 13, 2013 at 9:33 pm #

            See what happens to your economy when you have no police and the laws are not enforced.

            Ol’ Rush fears the cops will get in the way of his drug habit.

          • Tea Party folk just fade away June 14, 2013 at 5:22 am #

            Whew! Only 6 “thumbs-downers” for Rush Limbaugh (whom buckskinned author, attorney and freedom-fighter, Gerry Spence, once called: “A people-hater, adored by people-haters.”)
            There is hope. And, of course, sooner or later the nutty, grizzled, angst-ridden Tea Party people … simply die off.

        • J-Frog June 13, 2013 at 2:28 pm #

          Point taken, When it gets to the point when it seems local law enforcement seek out crime. I can stand seeing resources wasted when there is no real deliverable to the people it is meant to serve.
          Yes we have crime here, Yes we need law enforcement here, NO we don’t need these bloated departments Like INET and other forces that show no real good outcome to getting drugs off our street. It’s not getting better, and in my experience anytime somebody that calls the police through some kind of dispute, 95% of the time it could have been handled in a better way because they don’t serve anymore, it’s all just numbers and protocol, of course unless your a friend of the family or whatever, yes that happens in this country bumpkin area, I am sick of seeing this false sense of accomplishment carried on with no objection.
          Our way of life is failing our MotherEarth, and forevermore I will continue to tread on the status quo if we act like everything is “all good in the hood”
          Lets see some rates go down before y’all start patting each other on the back. If incarceration rates have gone down or something like that, I would re-track all my previous statements and put a “sock in it”
          I was born and raised in LP, the problems we had there 10 years ago have not gone away, if anything they have been reinforced.
          On the other hand It’s nice to see how some good people made sure the skate park happened, considering the kids have not a whole lot to do, so any (extra) money that goes in other places that could go to the youths benefit, is a waste in my book.
          Yeah they definitely deserve credit! but not the reaction of “Yes Sir, Sorry Sir, Thank You Sir, Anything You say Sir”
          Authority is not truth, Truth should be the authority.
          We are failing the generations after us the more we stay in our content bubbles and do nothing about this climate cliff we are heading towards, Not fiscal cliff (that was fake) but this climate cliff!
          Wasting resources is a contributor to this climate cliff we are heading towards..

          • How the government-haters affect me ... June 13, 2013 at 5:12 pm #


          • Anti-authoritarianism June 14, 2013 at 10:00 am #

            Thank you J-Frog, for the brilliant anti-authority speech.
            However, I feel more comfortable picking and choosing what feels best for me on each occasion that might present itself.

  4. Steve June 13, 2013 at 10:08 pm #

    Gives the word “public servant” a whole new meaning.

  5. Ken Warner June 15, 2013 at 8:56 am #

    “Mark: Private business owner since 1980. ”

    And the only reason you have been able to do that is that you had government provided police and fire protection, reliable 24 hour electricity, reliable water you could drink without getting sick, air you could breath without fatal consequences, building codes that assured your building wouldn’t collapse on you or your customers, reliable sewer so people wouldn’t have to crap in the street in front of your shop, roads that you and your customers could use to get to your business, an internet and telephone service that is reliable because it is regulated by the government, reliable, government regulated and provided in some cases health care so that your employees and customers could get medical treatment as necessary, business regulations that keep you from being preyed upon by unscrupulous business practice and people, an educated population that can read and write because they’ve had a government provided education, treaties with foreign nations that regulated international commerce snd shipping.

    Do I need to mention the strong defense department and a military that keeps foreign invaders at bay?

    Never on the public dole? The only way you’ve been able to be in business is because of public money. You’re taxes alone wouldn’t have even come close to providing all those things.

    You are a member of a society that supports you in so many ways without you even noticing that you forget that you would be a beggar on a street corner without everybody around you.

    But go ahead, keep thinking that you did it all by yourself. It’s so much easier that applying any rational analysis to find the real reason for your relative success.

    • erik simpson June 15, 2013 at 10:16 am #

      It is truly wonderful that we live in this Best of All Possible Worlds that has been nurtured throughout most of the last billion years by the benevolent government that oversees us and delivers us from evil. Come on, Ken! Of course we benefit from society, and most of us (including Mark, I’m sure) pay for it. But ‘beggar on a street corner’? That’s a little too much ‘hive mind’ for me. We didn’t build it? The hell we didn’t; we built (and are still working on) the government we love and loathe.

      • Where are your front-runners? June 15, 2013 at 5:04 pm #

        There is a growing movement in America today. Some are incensed at all forms of government. They think people employed by the government are bad, make too much money, and therefore nothing good whatsoever can ever come from the government.

        If these hate-mongers had somebody to vote for – (I mean … come on… Sarah Palin? John McCain? That crazy Tea Party lady from Minnesota? …) Perhaps if they had some front-runners America can actually rally around, they wouldn’t act and sound so nutty. But until then …

        • I rest my case June 16, 2013 at 7:51 pm #

          No presidential conservative front-runners presented.

        • Desert Tortoise June 17, 2013 at 8:13 am #

          The very ideas the Tea Party advocate makes you want to vomit. Thank goodness most Americans are repelled by their ideology. They were never anything more than a tool of Sal Russo to advance the interests of his wealthy clients at Russo, Marsh and Rogers. They organized the Tea Party, paid for the Tea Party express and used this rubes for their own ends, to be disposed of when they became a liability.

      • Ken Warner June 15, 2013 at 5:12 pm #

        “But ‘beggar on a street corner’?”

        Try going without any public service and see how long it takes to get eaten for dinner.

        No, our government, our society, individual members of society are not perfect. But they are better than most. Even with all the jerks you meet on a daily basis.

        At least we don’t have to worry about getting blown up by some true believer at the super market.

        • Desert Tortoise June 17, 2013 at 8:10 am #

          It’s true. None of us could lead the lives we lead if a million other Americans didn’t go to work each day, play by the rules and do their jobs more or less correctly the great majority of the time. There would be no electricity to any small isolated community in the US if that service was not subsidized by the government and by the large industrial users who’s higher rates subsidize residential users. Same for water and gas utilities. You would not have pave highways on which to undertake commerce without the government planning and funding them. Private enterprise will not do this, nor will private enterprise pay for the education of the workers this or any nation needs to sustain a high standard of living except collectively through taxes. That is how it gets done. All of the infrastructure and education required by businesses to support their operations and the distribution and sale of their goods and services comes from tax money and is planned and implemented by government bodies.

    • Tourbillon June 15, 2013 at 8:22 pm #

      All those things you speak of, they have been there for all of us. Yet people like Mark are the ones who have shouldered the burden of paying for them, and people like Mark are the ones who have provided jobs and services to their fellow citizens while carrying that burden when other people have chosen to be long term unemployed (ahem) living off of Mark’s tax dollars. It is easy for you and “Julia” and the President to castigate Mark for “you didn’t build that” but Mark and folks like him have in fact built what you see. The parasites have not.

      • erik simpson June 16, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

        Tourbillon has said it better than I did. The benefits of living in a civilized society didn’t spring into being by an act of the collective will. They were bought and paid for by the efforts of productive members of the society. They do indeed ‘build that’. It’s a mistake to regard our government as some separate entity that is either good or bad. We ARE the government. If it does good, it’s to our credit: if it does bad, it’s our responsibility.

        • Not so easy to get rid of them June 17, 2013 at 11:37 am #

          Any idea how long it takes to get rid of a bad elected official?

          • Tom O. June 17, 2013 at 1:13 pm #

            Not till 2016.

      • Glad Taxpayer. June 17, 2013 at 5:20 am #

        I have no problem paying taxes. Never have. No matter what party is in office. The benefits far outweigh not having some extra money to buy what? Another suit? More food?
        How about YOU Tourbillon?
        Are you enjoying the benefits of MY tax dollars?


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