- Associated Press - Saturday, December 21, 2019

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) -

Nearly 1,200 employees in one South Carolina city are getting early Christmas presents in the form of January pay raises.

The Spartanburg Herald-Journal reports that the Spartanburg County Council recently adopted the county’s first pay restructuring in more than a decade, which includes $5.3 million in annual pay increases and benefits for jobs in 27 pay grades ranging from $23,500 to $167,710. The increases will affect 1,183 employees.

The Council had already budgeted for 4% increases. Some will get more, and others will get less.

County Administrator Cole Alverson said tax revenues are greater than expected, and all the raises can be paid for without a tax increase.



The raises take effect Jan. 3, and will be seen in the Jan. 23 paychecks, he said.

Designed to attract and retain employees, council members said they hope the raises make up for several lean budget years of no or little pay increases.

“It could be deemed as a day late, but hopefully won’t be a dollar short,” Councilman Michael Brown said.

Longtime Councilman David Britt said, “Our number one asset is our people. That’s who Spartanburg County is and has enabled us to be as successful as we are.

“They survived with us during the down time when we didn’t have money to give. We’ve invested in the county. Now it’s time to invest in our people.”

The county hired a consultant, Evergreen Solutions of Tallahassee, Florida, to perform the pay study.

Project director Queenell Fox said her team looked at each position, its classification, duties, skill set and experience required, then compared it with other similar positions in other communities to come up with a fairer pay scale.

She said of the 1,550 full- and part-time county employees, 1,096 participated in the study and 1,183 qualified for pay increases.

The other government bodies used for comparison include Aiken County; Beaufort County; Buncombe County, N.C.; City of Greenville; Greenville County; Rock Hill; Spartanburg; Dorchester County; Gaston County, N.C.; Greenville Water; Horry County; Lexington County; Richland County; State of South Carolina; Union County, N.C.; and York County.

She said Spartanburg County fell 8.3% behind its peers at the minimum pay grade, and 10.4% at the maximum grade.

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