OKLAHOMA COUNTY, Okla. (KFOR) – Eight elected leaders in Oklahoma County will see more money on their paycheck in the new year. The raises were approved during Thursday’s budget board meeting. Outgoing District 3 commissioner, Kevin Calvey, put the item on the agenda.
“I voted against it last time when it benefitted me,” said Calvey. “This one does not, so I’m happy to make the motion to approve.”
The motion passed in a 6-to-1 vote. During the meeting, court clerk Rick Warren, argued the increase was needed due to rising prices.
“Even though you’re making the same, your ability to keep your lifestyle, to save money, and do what you do each day is lowered because of inflation,” said Warren.
In the past two years, elected county leaders have received two separate raises – including the one just approved – worth $30,000. According to treasurer, Butch Freeman, it had been 14 years since the elected officials received a raise.
The salaries, which are public record, will start January 3rd. The county treasurer will receive $124,587. The court clerk, sheriff, and commissioner of district 2 will make $130,087. District 1, District 2 and county assessor will make $135,087. Once the county clerk is elected in April, that person will make $135,087.
District 2 commissioner, Brian Maughan, was the lone “no” vote.
” I promised in my campaign when I very first ran for this office that I would never vote for a pay raise,” said Maughan.
He said the laws in place do not allow those working for elected officials to make more than people in office. The formula for when elected leaders start getting those raises has made it so each one will get paid a different salary, which ultimately will affect how much those in office can pay their staff.
“The elected officials, to get the maximum pay raise that are entering into office in January, will be able to pay their staff doing the same job infinitely more than what the employees of those who work for us that were elected two years ago doing the same exact job.” Maughan said he will reach out to the Attorney General’s office and possibly look into legislation to see what can be done about equal pay.