Seven Former Sheriff's Employees Receive Vacation Pay

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The departure of seven employees from the Cannon County Sheriff's Department in August has cost Cannon County taxpayers over $20,000.

The Cannon County Commission voted Saturday to pay the money to the employees, who left when former Sheriff Billy Nichols lost his bid for re-election. The total amount is $22,231.06.

The money is owed the former employees because it is for accrued vacation days, according to Cannon County Executive Mike Gannon.

Those receiving the money and the amounts are:

Charlie Wilder, $7,480.00.

Brad Hall, $4,606.16.

Vance Walker, $3,427.94.

Patrick Fann, $3,411.36.

Anna Nichols, $1,822.40.

Loretta Bailey, $741.60.

Andy Bryson, $741.60.

The sheriff has the authority to set the leave and vacation policies for the department, separate from the rest of county government, Gannon said.

Gannon said it is his understanding the county's new sheriff, Darrell Young, is looking at changing the policy so that leave or vacation days can not be carried over.

The money to pay the former employees will come out of the sheriff's department budget for the current fiscal year. Gannon said it is likely Sheriff Young will have to come before the commission to ask for additional funding before the end of the year.

In other action the Commission:

• Approved adding $44,320 to the Cannon County School System's General Fund Budget for the 2010-2011 Fiscal Year. The addition money was necessary because state law requires the Local Education Authority (LEA) to have a budget that does not supplant state dollars for local. Due to a decrease in the amount of property taxes paid, the school system's share of the property tax brought in less money. If the commission had not transferred the money to the school system, it stood to lose over $12 million in state funding.

• Approved an amendment to the 2010-2011 General Purpose School Budget of an increase in revenue of $150,000 and an equal increase in expenditures of $150,000. The money is from an Agriculture Enhancement Grant and will be used for the purpose of constructing a pavilion at Cannon County High School.

• Approved an amendment to the 2010-2011 General Purpose School Budget of an increase in revenue of $19,155 and an equal increase in expenditures of $19,155. The money is from a SNAP Grant and will be used to purchase consumable school supplies for children whose parents are eligible for food stamps.

• Approved Resolution 2010-8, which authorizes and empowers the County Emergency Medical Serviced Director and the County Executive to apply for a Community Facilities Loan through the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development in an amount not to exceed $160,000.

• Approved Resolution 2010-9, authorizing the county to apply for a grant from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. If received, the money would be used to purchase solid waste recycling equipment.

• Elected County Executive Mike Gannon as commission Chairman and Mark Barker as Chairman Pro-Tem.

• Reappointed Dr. Leon Reuhland as Cannon County Medical Examiner. Dr. Reuhland serves in the position at no charge to the county.
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Members Opinions:
October 19, 2010 at 4:06pm
The former sheriff's dept. employee's earned that money so they should receive it. Proper and classy move by the current administration and the town of Woodbury.
October 19, 2010 at 4:36pm
that the deal federal wage hour law would have made them pay it anyway they earned it sheriffs dept employees do not make enough anyway or medical ambulance men sheriff makes good salary pay deputies more and ems
October 19, 2010 at 5:23pm
I agree if they money is owed, then it should be paid but my question is, how much vacation time does a person have saved up from over the years that they are owed $5000 to $7500 at one time. I don't know what they make an hour, but estimating $20.00 a hour, it would be around 9.5 weeks to get close to $7500.00 owed. Did they never take vacation days and work all the time? At my company vacation time is not allowed to roll over from year to year so if we choose not to take it, we get the pay but we don't have to take the days off. Maybe the same should apply to our county so we do not end up in a situation like this again where we end up paying extra money in this year's budget that should have already been paid from previous years budgets. Everyone needs a vacation at times to get away from the stress of their job so maybe it would be a good idea to make them take it or lose it.
October 19, 2010 at 11:23pm
Policy is policy but it definitely needs to be amended. And persons in law enforcement fields should be required to take time off if at all possible just for their own sanity / take a breath purposes.
October 24, 2010 at 10:33am
I am in a corporate job situation and know all to well the peer pressure of actually taking the time off. No matter when I ask for it the dates always seem to be a "Bad Timing for the Company" situation. So the pressure mounts to cancel.
2 Heart attacks and 1 stroke later, now I take the time when I want and if met with resistance my doctor informed them [my superiors] that he will "Prescribe" me out of work.
I am sure these cops where met with the same old "Oh NOT NOW!!" rhetoric.
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