Council approves adding chief deputy position to treasurer's office

The Huntington County Council approved adding the position of chief deputy in the Huntington County treasurer's office during a meeting held Monday, March 23.

Brenda Hamilton, Huntington County treasurer, requested that Deputy Cindy Yeiter be named chief deputy, with a $4,500 salary increase. Hamilton explained to the council what she characterized as her office's slim budget and its fiscally responsible choices. She also referenced former chief deputies' raises and extra training.

Following a recommendation from the wage committee, the council approved the addition of the position with only a $2,000 salary increase. The extra dollars, which are retroactive to Jan. 1, 2009, will to come out of the clerical assistance line item. An increase in next year's salary will be considered while creating the 2010 budget.

Council member Shane Bickel explained his approval, saying, "Businesses are only as good as their employees. We should do whatever we can to retain them."

In other business Monday evening, Community Development Director Nate Schacht approached the council seeking additional funds for legal expenses. The budget originally contained $6,000 for the line item. To date, 89 percent of that line item has been used. Sixty-six percent of that was for a single court case, Schacht said.

With nine months remaining in the year, council asked Schacht to consider transferring funds or raising fees to earn the extra dollars. They will consider allotting more money, if need be, in coming months, they said.

County Superintendent Troy Hostetler asked the council to pursue purchasing a road grader. The county currently owns two, however one is very unreliable, said Hostetler. The newest grader is more than 30 years old. He suggested purchasing the grader in place of a new dump truck. The council approved purchasing the equipment.