First off I have been remiss in my blogging the last few weeks. No excuses just haven't gotten to it lately. I have to admit I am even getting tired of reading the blogs which are full of political stuff. Don't get me wrong this is an important election and we all need to vote and if you don't know the issues or who to vote for yet then you need to get informed. On the other hand I really feel that most people have made up their minds by now. The fact that such a high amount of voters have early voted (30% as of today) points to the fact that they have made up their minds.
Now to the main topic, I was surprised to wake up this morning and do my usual quick look over the major papers online editions and see that the New Mexican had a story which reported I was getting a 56% raise. The story states that I currently receive $45,141 a year and will get $68, 308 with a raise set to go before the county commission today. I did call the reporter and let her know that I currently earn $68,308 and that the last sheriff to earn $45,141 was former Sheriff Benjie Montano who earned that in 1997. Current state law does not allow a politician such as myself to get a raise midterm. Therefor county officials who were in mid term two years ago when the last raise was put into place did not get the last raise. It is my belief that what the county commissioners were voting on today was a raise to bring reelected and newly elected officials up to par with the rest of the elected officials who got the raise two years ago when they are sworn in on January 1, 2008.
I spoke to the reporter and the incorrect wages she reported were supplied to her by the county public information officer so I can see how if she was provided the erroneous current pay and then she looked at the pay set in the county resolution to be voted on then she would assume huge raises for county officials. There is a constitutional amendment currently on the ballot, Amendment #2 which would allow for midterm salary increases for elected officials. The benefit to this amendment is that we would not have county commissioners or others who make less than their counterparts because a raise is enacted midterm. Currently newly elected officials get the raise while those already serving would not get the raise.
I am surprised the story did not get much attention, you would think that in today's economy %50 raises for elected officials would get a lot of attention. My office received no phone calls, emails, or complaints over the erroneous story. As for me, I am content with my current pay.