Raises sought



January 27, 2010 - 12:00 AM

Allen County commissioners agreed with department heads Tuesday morning that county employees were deserving of a pay raise, but made no move to dole one out.
Noting last year’s cost of living index was static, Treasurer Sharon Utley said, “We’d like for you to look at a 2 percent merit increase for everyone.”
Based on current salaries, totaling about $5 million, a 2 percent hike would cost $100,000, or about what a property tax levy of one mill generates.
“We value our employees, but we’d like to have comparisons” to see how wages stand against those of other counties and local businesses, Commissioner Dick Works said.

JASON NELSON, Emergency Medical Services director, said a formal agreement for Allen County ambulances to answer calls in western Bourbon County essentially was a done deal.
The proposal, including Bronson and Uniontown, was brought up by Nelson two weeks ago. He noted response by an ambulance stationed in Moran was much quicker than one coming from Fort Scott.
Mercy Hospital in Fort Scott provides ambulance service in Bourbon County; all ambulances are stationed in Fort Scott.
Nelson said response time to Bronson was as much as 30 minutes, while response from Moran was about a third of that.
“We went into Bourbon County two times in the last couple of days,” Nelson said.

COMMISSIONERS agreed that for the safety of people and property in Allen County, it would be wise to remove any possibility of dispatch interference created by signals from foreign antennas on the 140-foot-tall tower adjacent to the Allen County Critical Response Center, 410 N. State St.
Kwikom, an Internet provider, and National Public Radio in Pittsburg have antennas on the tower, which they will be asked to remove.
Alan Weber, county counselor, said Kwikom’s lease has a 120-day notice time to remove antennas. NPR’s contract permits it to remain active on the tower until September.
“We want to be certain we won’t have any interference when dispatching,” said Angie Murphy, 911 dispatch director.
Transfer of equipment and dispatchers from City Hall, where Iola and Allen County have shared a facility, will be done Thursday.

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