Bath Supervisors hear more questions about a Bath County employee’s raise
Controversy over a raise for a Bath County employee came up again at the September Bath Board of Supervisors meeting. On Tuesday night, there was more discussion about a raise given to a county employee that was approved by county administration. During public comment speakers questioned how the raise was authorized, saying the board of supervisors should have first put the money into the budget. Supervisor Bart Perdue asked County Attorney Mike Collins if the board has a written opinion on the raise that was given out. Collins responded that he had not been asked to do one and Perdue then asked if the board could get one. Board Chairman Bruce McWilliams then suggested that the discussion could be handled outside of a public meeting. Supervisor Cliff Gilchrest addressed the question of the raise during his comments. He said, with his understanding as far as he’s concerned, there is no controversy. He said protocol was followed by county administration in issuing the raise and he felt that it was a long time overdue. Gilchrest said he felt very confident that what was done was well within the guidelines that are in the county code.
During public comment Murphy Wilson of Bacova spoke about her concern that Bath County was not sending representatives to VDOT planning meetings. She said no one from Bath was at the last meeting six months ago, where all other counties in the district were represented and had specific presentations identifying projects to improve transportation needs in their areas. She said the next VDOT planning meeting is coming up on October 8 and she said she hoped that the board is prepared to identify transportation projects for Bath County and make a presentation to the transportation board. Later in the meeting Board Chairman Bruce McWilliams responded to Wilson’s comments saying she brought up some good points. He added that the board has set a work session with VDOT for October 6. McWilliams said he recognizes that the board has some things to learn and through some good advice from Supervisor Claire Collins and County Administrator Ashton Harrison they are going to be engaged at that meeting and will focus on putting together a presentation for next year. He said he felt it was too late to properly prepare one for this year. He said the board simply missed that. McWilliams added that the work session with VDOT will focus on funding and processes and understanding how to best request funding. McWilliams said Bath representatives will be attending VDOT’s planning meeting on October 8.
Also on Tuesday night, Jackie Baughn, Bath’s Public Health Nurse, proposed an alternate work schedule for the health department for the board’s consideration. Baughn said that many clients work during their current hours, which are 8 to 4:30. The new schedule being considered is 7:30 to 6pm Monday through Thursday. She said discussing this change with the board of supervisors is the first step in the process and then a proposal would be submitted to the state health director. After discussion the board indicated the change in hours is something to consider.