During the Public Input portion of the Marshall County Council meeting Monday, Ward Byers, Director of Community Corrections spoke to members about their decision to freeze the salary of the Director of Community Corrections.
Byers said, “I am not here because I’m upset that you froze the pay. I’m not motivated by money. It’s the disrespect you’ve shown to the Advisory Board. That’s a board that has the legal authority to set budgets for Community Corrections. It has the legal authority to govern Community Corrections.”
Byers told the County Council the local Advisory Board reviews and approves the budget and then there is a 21-member board in Indianapolis through the Department of Corrections that also must approved the budget.
Mr. Byers said to the council, “I would ask you to simply, in the future, reach out to the board, you have a member sitting right here (Tim Harmon) and ask their opinion, discuss with them before you freeze budgets of employees, before you cut money out of a user fee fund that has zero to do with your General Fund.” Byers said he understood there was probably a reason behind the decision, and he understands the Wage Committee has done extensive work to assist in the decisions made by the council.
Ward said, “I’m not arguing with your decision, I’m just simply asking that when there is a governing board, please reach out to that governing board and have a discussion with them.” He also asked the County Council to consider an amendment to the 2022 Salary Ordinance and fix their decision on the wage freeze.