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Loudoun supervisors considering 62 percent pay hike for next board

Come 2020, members of the next Board of Supervisors and the Loudoun Planning Commission could be getting hefty raises.

On Tuesday night, the board’s finance committee recommended a 62 percent increase for the next Board of Supervisors and between a 17-34 percent increase for the next planning commissioners.

The recommended pay bump for supervisors was agreed to nearly unanimously, with all but one committee member -- Vice Chairman Ralph Buona (R-Ashburn) -- in favor of the decision.

Buona called the proposed raise “obscene to biblical proportions.”

The proposed increase would raise the current board salaries of $41,200 to $66,826 starting in 2020; the compensation for the chair from $50,000 to $81,100; and compensation for the vice chair from $45,320 to $73,363. After that, supervisors would receive a 2 percent salary increase for three years.

If approved, the pay raises would not take effect until Jan. 1, 2020. Under Virginia code, the board cannot increase its compensation during the current term.

First-term Chairwoman Phyllis Randall (D-At Large) and second-term Supervisor Matt Letourneau (R-Dulles), also the chair of the finance committee, said they worked together on the proposed pay raise.

Together, they fiercely defended the committee’s recommendation, pointing out that supervisors had not received a pay increase since 2008 and that the raise was keeping up with the overall county operating budget, which has grown from $340.1 million to $504.2 million -- an increase of 48 percent or roughly 4 percent annually.

Randall argued that by raising the next board’s salaries, it could widen the pool of future board candidates and not deter residents from running for office simply because the pay is too low.

“It’s unrealistic to believe that someone who’s choosing to serve in this way can stay at a salary that was put forth in 2008. It’s just not realistic,” Randall said. “I also think that what you want to do is have a wider pool of people to be able to run for an office, you don’t want people to stand for an office who can just afford to take the financial hit and believe me, I took an enormous financial hit … I’m not complaining, I chose to do that, I want to do that.”

In neighboring jurisdictions like Fairfax, Arlington and Henrico counties chairs of the Board of Supervisors make anywhere from more than $55,000 to $100,000, and their vice chairmen and supervisors make anywhere from more than $50,000 to $95,000.

Vice Chairman Buona pointed out that in Prince William County, where the population is much larger than Loudoun, the board’s chair and vice chair make less than Loudoun’s.

He also said a raise of 62 percent would mean that supervisors would be getting roughly a 5 percent compound annual increase in pay since 2008.

“Boy, I bet county staff would like to get a 5 percent compounded increase every single year … because there’s several years where staff got zero,” Buona said.

The vice chair also shot back at Randall’s notion that raising the board’s salaries could attract a larger pool of applicants.

“We don’t lack for candidates, we don’t lack for quality candidates and if we think the salaries are inhibiting putting quality people up here then that’s an indictment on ourselves,” Buona said. “We’re saying ‘We’re not quality candidates, we need better ones,so let’s pay them better.’ I don’t buy that.”

Last summer, the board approved a $240,000 increase for eight of their district budgets. Buona was one of three supervisors to reject that budget bump. He also declined to take any of the money for his office.

Supervisor Letourneau said the job of supervisor had “changed dramatically” requiring more of their time.

“This is a far more complex county, it’s a far more difficult county to manage, and it requires more time to do that and we were just getting by for a long time,” Letourneau said. “I think we’ve had some changes in leadership over the years, which has helped us quite a bit, we’ve had some excellent staff, but one thing is clear, our counterparts in Fairfax and Prince William have a lot more staff aides, they have much bigger district budgets, they have district offices in their budgets, there’s a lot more help.”

The proposed pay raises will go to the full board for discussion on June 22. A public hearing is still required before the raise can be adopted.

Proposed raises for the county’s planning commissioners was agreed to unanimously by the finance committee. The Planning Commission’s proposed pay bumps include: the Planning Commission chairman’s salary going from $22,334 to $30,000; the vice chairman, from $21,315 to $27,500; and the salary of planning commissioners from $21,315 to $25,000.

Changes to the Planning Commission’s salaries would not take effect until the next Board of Supervisors appoint the next commission.


Pay increases should be exactly the same percentage as tax cuts!!

What the heck?  Is this an April Fools joke?  Oh wait, it’s June!

Our supervisors are cheap at twice the price, pay them!

Randall is a joke and won’t have to worry about getting a pay raise in 2020 for she will never be re-elected! She lucked out because the vote was split three ways. Paying Randall the little she makes is laughable for she has zero experience and even Stevie Wonder can see that by the way she runs the board! Saines, a criminal, will be gone too. He is a disgrace to be allowed to enact legislation that effects citizens of this County with his criminal history. The Republicans will win Sterling back as well as the Chairman’s seat. The only democrat left will be from Leesburg and everyone knows what she is all about for the former chairwoman of the Loudoun County Democratic Party works for her now! Talk about pay back! $60,000.00 a year to sit on the board is laughable and any supervisor who is dumb enough to accept it will be defeated in the next election! Thank godness for Ralph from Ashburn!

It’s time for a major over haul of the entire pay scale for Loudoun workers. When Leesburg pays starting police officers $10,000.00 more than Loudoun Deputies earn and Sheriff Chapman earns more than the FIB director earns…..its time for a change and that’s why I voted for Republicans in Loudoun and for President Trump!

Brian Allman
Democratic nominee for Sherriff of Loudoun County 2015

If this means that they cut back on taking kickbacks, I’m all for the raises.

Paying the BoS members $60k a year isn’t all that much money considering they are responsible for our multi-billion dollar tax revenue.  9 BoS * $60k = $540,000/yr. That amounts to 0.000216% of the budget.

Give the BoS a pay raise.

We have folks on here claiming that teachers should get a portion of this raise.  Let’s review:

1. The total amount of $ in this raise would be ~$275K.  In contrast, the LCPS board gave teachers an extra $10M over and above their step increases this past year. 

2. Many LCPS teachers are getting 5%+ raises this year.  In what world is that less than the compounded 4% raise the BOS is proposing?  (not that I support this cumulative 60% raise however)

3. Teachers get massive fringe benefits that allow them to retire at the ripe ol age of 52 with a $50K/yr pension for life.

4. LCPS teachers earn more at Step 1 and Step 30 (where teachers reside from ~51 till they retire potentially15- 20 years later) than the more expensive Fairfax teachers.

5. LCPS teachers receive no objective evaluation, over 99.5% are rated effective regardless of how well their students perform, and have no risk of donwsizing.  It’s as cushy as it gets.

Randall is a complete embarrassment.  She uses the county staff as if they are her personal PR firm.  She hosts an expensive “state of the county” event in which she says nothing substantive, tries to pretend she is political “royalty”, and wants to waste even more tax money on county PR staff.  Now she has the gall to suggest that her choice to choreograph all these PR events instead of having a real job is a “financial hit” to her.  Having Randall use our tax $$ to promote her political ambition IS THE real financial hit .... to the citizens of Loudoun.

this is ridiculous. The current BOS should turn in their pay…they certainly do not deserve it! Why pay for stupidity? I have been in this county over 25 years and never felt like the BOS in power served their constituents.They get elected promising this and that, and then cave when the big fat developers wave greenbacks in their face. It happens every time. Pay raise? No way!!

I have no problem with anyone receiving a raise.  If its deserved then they should receive one.  But, it’s the amount of the raise I have an issue with.  How about giving some of that raise to our teachers.

I’m all for paying people fairly. Anyone deserving a raise should receive one.  What about Loudoun County Sherriff teachers and office staff that haven’t received a raise in a long time? What about the men and women of the Loudoun County Sherriffs Department?  They are currently under paid and put their life on the line every day! People wonder why we lose good talented individuals to other organizations.  How about a 3 to 5% raise and spread more of that money around to other individuals .

Wow. I was considering a 62% pay increase as well.
But my partner started laughing so hard he almost choked.
I thought local politics was supposed to be about doing your time and returning back to your job.

WHERE ELSE besides Politics (US Congress, State and Local Governments) do the people who get the raise get to vote on the level of raise?
SUCH a bunch of BS… The county Staff has not seen pay raises, Teachers have not seen pay raises, those people are FULL TIME county employees.
Looks like only one of the currently elected officials have ANY CONCERN for the future of Loudoun. The others are worried about their person potential.
I can only hope the PEOPLE all across the county remember this at election time and not vote any of them back in.

Outraged, yeah, I am too.  First off, I guess simple math is beyond many today.  Do the math - and you will see it is not a 62% increase.  I guess being wrong is more exciting than being accurate.  Secondly, I join in with every one of the complainers here, in their outrage over the salaries each and every complainer earns.  I think every complainer here should give back all but 10% of their salary to their employers.  Certainly, every complainer here is grossly overpaid and should be ashamed of themselves for taking a salary.

I believe that the majority of us will agree that the proposed raise is insane.  Somebody tell me where to protest please.

Thank you Supervisor Buona for recognizing County staff and for “keeping it real”. Greed blinds - no way do I support that big of an increase.

More corruption in local politics. Why not just make it an even 100% raise? Randall should resign ASAP, that is/was a poor answer. She took an enormous financial hit and then tried to claim she’s not complaining…Yes, you are! Anyone that voted for this is a disgrace. Their reasoning is nonsense. By the way, Randall doesn’t even respond to her emails, she has an assistant or two respond for her. I responded back that I’d prefer to hear from Randall since that’s who the email was intended. In the past, all other board members responded on their own. And I’m sure 99% of Loudoun didn’t care if she ran or not. I voted for her because I thought she’d have new ideas but I won’t vote fer her ever again.

Of course the new board will deserve such a raise as I believe they may identify and actually address the key problems of the County making it a better place to live not just verbalize the status quo or do slightly worse:
TRAFFIC IS WORSE yet where is long term solution?
VDOT not doing its job even at its own published minimum standards!
Route 15 still a disaster which could be fixed yet inexplicably has not been fixed,
LCPS not carefully financially managed (turf fields not even analyzed prior to being approved, class size minimums not established, bus use minimums not established etc), Redskins current and prior owners, HHMI and hospitals allowed to avoid ALL property tax even the 28% specifically in the law for police and fire protection, Composite index not even addressed which cost Loudoun over $200 million per year and Dulles Airport parking lots still allowed to be extreme profit for MWAA yet no property tax for Loudoun and then there is that confederate soldier guarding the courthouse. The new board will finally realize high density residential projects push the tax rate up. We should be willing to pay for a functioning BOS but will we get one in 2020?
Bob O__ Esq.

If the raise opens the positions up to more folks to run then I say yes BUT 62% is quite obscene. I haven’t seen any data on the average number of hours spent on the job. If we complain that a new teacher with a masters makes too much for ten months work then we need to make a similar analysis of the hours spent by BOS on their duties. Color it anyway you will it is still a PART-TIME job. That salary for PT work is ridiculous. Raises for data.

Glad to see the Board of Supervisors are thinking about themselves instead of the people they serve.  If you don’t like the pay, move on to another job…I remember the planning commission trying to bump their salaries behind closed doors too - I think that was shut down though, just like this should be…

DD and I agree!!!!

Or another idea, how about we offer the job at the current rate and see if there are any takers.  If so, keep the pay the same

Holy @#%$@#$%!

I’m not against giving them a bump, but 62-friggin percent!!!!!

How about we put some metrics to their pay raises?  How about we make a direct correlation between their pay and how much time the average Loudoun citizen sits in traffic?  If our wasted time goes up, their pay goes down.  If they actually do something to solve real problems, their pay goes up.

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